"And He said to them, 'Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one's life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions...'
'Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys.
For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.'"
Luke 12:25, 33-34
We spend much of our life accumulating wealth, or at least trying to.
During our early adult years we’re mostly concerned with paying the bills and providing adequately for our growing children. That’s a good thing, and it’s what responsible adults should do.
Later we focus on saving up for retirement. That’s good and makes sense, too; after all, the years will come when we can’t work anymore and we will need something to live on. So we deny ourselves some pleasures during our working years in order to invest in our future.
Covetousness is a subtle line we usually cross before we’re aware of it. At some point we start to think that our “net worth” and our “personal worth“ are the same thing. We obsess about feathering our own nest and fail to see the opportunities God gives us to help people around us in genuine need. There, we lose our focus.
This life isn’t all there is. Just as we work to provide for our retirement, we should think about providing for what comes after that. God has shown us how to lay up treasure in heaven, not just in the bank.
“Provide yourselves with... a treasure in the heavens, because where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.”
Is my heart in the bank vault, or in heaven? If whatever I can use to help the poor here and now is an investment in heaven, it seems that would make even more sense than saving for a “better” retirement in this life.
Father, keep my focus on heaven even while I seek to be a wise steward of your gifts in this life. Show me what it means to seek first Your Kingdom and righteousness. Thank you for the assurance of a home in heaven by your grace. Prepare my heart to live there, in Jesus’ name, amen.
Pastor Dan Giles