“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth … But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Mat 6:19-21).
People want to increase their possessions. Whatever the cause may be–the need to feel secure or the desire for luxury and pleasure–this human tendency seems to be very strong. But investing in the world is investing in something very temporary. Everything wears out, deteriorates, devaluates. A brand new car loses much of its value the minute it leaves the showroom. Many of the things we work so hard for, in time are reduced to nothing. And even millionaires become paupers in times of war and financial unrest.
Investing in the Future
In the Kingdom of God things work quite differently. The above words of Jesus show that clearly. There is no rust and no moth, no burglar and no thief. There are no corrupt politicians, cunning bankers, con men or swindlers. It sounds like a very solid investment plan, but are there only long-term returns?
Here and Now
Many people think that Christ cares for us only spiritually, that He is concerned with us only after death. Such people do not understand the full riches of the teaching and life of Jesus Christ. He is more than the Savior of our souls. He wants to bless his children and lead them to a full and abundant life (John 10:10). The above text also points this out. Jesus says to each one of us, “where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Where do we want our hearts to be? Often, we are so involved with the material, that even our desire to live a meaningful life is shoved aside in the process. Money and property become too important. They stand between God and us. And Jesus warns us here that if that happens, our life on earth in fact becomes more impoverished than ever. As wise king Solomon put it so many centuries ago, “For without Him (God), who can eat or find enjoyment? To the man who pleases Him, God gives wisdom, knowledge and happiness, but to the sinner He gives the task of gathering and storing up wealth to hand it over to the one who pleases God” (Ecc 2:25-26).
Where is your Heart?
Our heart is where our treasure is, where we invest our God-given time, talents and resources. And that is the reason for Jesus’ warning. He asks us to invest in the Kingdom of God, instead of losing our heart to that which is temporary. He wants us to make a wise investment. He who only lives for this life, wastes both his life and his wealth. The “Rich Fool” in the parable of Luke 12:21 is an example to us all: rich in the eyes of the world, his attachment to earthly wealth made him a pauper in the sight of God.
Jesus encourages us, together with Him, to invest in doing God’s will, in storing up treasures that are not erased by death. Let us therefore invest in God’s Kingdom. Let us give time, money, earnest prayer and real commitment to build God’s church and to spread God’s Word in this world that is lost without Him. Our heart will follow, for where we invest our heart will be also. Then we experience the fullness of Christian life every day, in love, joy and peace that are not of this world. We will lead a life of true abundance. Here and now, and in eternity.
Lord, open my eyes for your true riches, the abundant life that You want to give. Help me not to be bound anymore by the material things of this world. Help me to truly invest, in the things that remain forever, with all the resources You have given me. Make me a builder of your church and a messenger of your Word. Amen.