If our treasure is here on earth, then everyday of our lives we are moving further away from our treasure, resulting in fear and uncertainty.
If our treasure is in heaven, then everyday of our lives we are moving closer to our treasure, resulting in hope and confidence.
I don't know why I've never thought of life this way. How much this sheds light on why there have been times in my life I've feared death or felt ambivalent towards heaven. These thoughts were the crux of one message shared by Randy Alcorn this weekend at a conference we were privileged to attend. The sadness over our missing dog was temporarily eclipsed by the wise teachings of Dr. Wayne Grudem and Randy Alcorn, addressing issues of earth (money, business, suffering, poverty), as well as treasures and glories of heaven that await us. My husband was invited to a pastors' lunch with these two distinguished men, and was thoroughly blessed by their candor as they shared personal testimonies. And after hearing a bit about Alcorn's story and listening to him share about treasure, I'm now compelled to read his book and this book on the matter.
Some snippets from my notes:
- The Bible says more about money and possessions than any other subject...not because the most important aspect of the Christian life, but because it is a critical area that we usually neglect.
- In Luke 3:7, John the Baptist's response to "bear fruit in keeping with repentance" = evidence of a changed life. The six answers he gives on how to bear fruit of a changed life all had to do with money and possessions.
- We are all familiar with Matthew 6:21, but have we considered: If you want a heart for something or someone, put your treasure there. Which means, you will develop a heart for the nations, adoption, the needy, etc. if you sacrificially invest in that area.
- We are the couriers of God's resources. Just as it would be absurd for the Fed-Ex guy to keep for himself all packages we give to him, we should not assume that God gives to us, that we might just hoard it all. It's His; we're just money managers.
- Rewards in heaven are God's idea, not ours. It brings Him joy to reward us and celebrate our faithfulness; therefore, it should motivate us to store up treasure in heaven without conflict or guilt.
Our fundamental understanding of who we are, and who Christ is, informs our everyday actions and attitudes. I was reminded this weekend to further align my mind with the Word of God, which will inform my heart, which will inform what I treasure, which, in turn, will bear the fruit that repentance brings.