Five years ago in mid-summer, I flew to New York City on a business trip. After arriving at the airport, the vendor we were traveling with immediately took us to Time Square in our hired vehicle to see a huge scrolling Marquette welcoming us to NYC. As I stood there watching this elaborate and very expensive scrolling message, meant for only a handful of people from Texas, I could not help but notice that we were surrounded by massive skyscrapers, high-tech, elaborate, computerized flashing billboards, massive theatre screens covering the entire sides of some buildings, and glittering maquettes all promoting “earthy treasures”. People were shoulder to shoulder racing through the square. Some were tourists awed by the activity around them, but most of these people seemed oblivious to the calling of the flashing displays as they rushed hurriedly to their destinations.
Before arriving at Time Square, we had driven through the Borough of Queens where many people were still without their electricity. According to the local news, some of these families had been without electricity for almost a week during a summer of record-breaking temperatures. Although I found Time Square to be technologically impressive, I was sadden as I thought of the amount of electricity being used to promote “earthly treasures” all around Times Square and just a few miles away, New Yorkers were sweltering. I wondered how many people just a few miles away, would have benefited if only one CEO of the businesses on Time Square had been willing to turn off their flashy, elaborate advertisements and had offered to have their electricity consumption rerouted to the nearby Borough of Queens?
In a world so consumed with “earthly treasure” and the “good life” it is easy for each of us to lose our focus on “heavenly treasures” and on God’s desire for our lives. In his book, The GOOD LIFE, Charles Colson states
“As we give away our lives in service—as we lose our lives in order to save them—we discover the true meaning of our lives in the midst of fellowship and community. None of this is possible, however, without sacrificial giving—the basis of culture and meaning in life as well.”
I challenge you to be attentive to ways that you can “lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven” as you traverse this world so consumed with earthly treasures.
19 “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal;
20 “But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth no rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.
21 “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
My prayer for each of you –
Heavenly Father, as we go throughout our busy-ness, help us to be mindful and sensitive to your leading. Give us a heart after Jesus’ heart – one of love and sacrificial giving. Give us spiritual eyes to see the heavenly treasures so interspersed and sometimes overshadowed or hidden by earthly treasures that lure us at every turn. Give is the strength and the desire to make the pursuit of heavenly treasures our daily priority in life.
In Jesus’ Name