Wednesday, March 13, 2024

Mid-Week Message - Treasure That Matters

"Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be."  Matthew 6:19-21 (NLT)

From the time that I was very little, my favorite item in our house was the cedar chest my father built before I was born.  For a long time, it was kept in my bedroom and in it were treasures that I loved to touch and wonder over.  One of those treasures was a shoe box filled with black and white pictures from Daddy's years in the army.  I didn't know who the people in the pictures were, except for him, but they were his and showed a part of his life that I wasn't a part of and I found that fascinating.  

Today, that cedar chest sits in my own home.  Everyone in my family knew that one day it would be mine.  It was just assumed that since I had loved it so much, I should be the one to have it when my parents were no longer here.  My mother told me to take it when Daddy passed away.  As much as I enjoy having it, and certainly wouldn't want anything to happen to it, I would gladly trade it to have him back if that were an option.  

As we were preparing to move to Georgia ten years ago and were going through our belongings to decide what to keep and what to sell or donate, I found myself a bit teary over some things that we were not taking with us.  So many possessions were tied to memories or were gifts from friends or family.  Even though I knew that I would not have room to store all that I had, I still found myself wanting to hold onto many things that anyone else would have found insignificant.  When I made the decision to let go of them I felt a tug in my heart that hurt a bit and I realized that I had been allowing the "stuff" of earth to have more power over me than it should.  

There isn't one single possession that came into this world with me or will go to Heaven with me.  One day, even the cedar chest that I love so much will be no more than a pile of dust.  Although I hate the thought of it, it is the truth.  The other thing I realize is that in Heaven I won't care about any of these things.  My eyes will be fully focused on the Savior.  What should matter to me now are the people around me and the needs that the Lord can use me to fulfill in their lives.  So many are hurting and need to reassured of His presence and power.  Way too many are unaware of the boundless love and freedom that are available for them if they will only accept Jesus as Lord of their lives.  It is those hearts that should be my focus, not the trinkets I've collected or the furniture that holds them. 

We were created to be eternal beings.  The years we spend on the planet earth are just the blink of an eye.  My mother used to tell me, "The older you get, the faster times goes."  She was right.  We all need to ask the Lord what His plans are for us.  How does He want to use our time here?  Are we to spend it collecting temporary pleasures or making an eternal impact in the lives of those around us?  When we stand before Him, will we want to discuss our earthly possessions or would we rather allow Him to reveal to us the hearts that were forever changed because we were dedicated to sharing His love?  

Jesus once said He had to be about His Father's business.  He showed us the way to lay up our treasures in Heaven.  If we listen for His voice and follow in His footsteps then we can know that our hearts will lie with our true treasure.  Treasure that will never decay or be stolen but will make an eternal difference.  I pray that you will find joy in His presence today. 

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