As my wife and I packed moving boxes, I asked Courtney, “How in the world did we accumulate all of this stuff?” We were fresh out of seminary. I served a local church while Courtney finished her Clinical Pastoral Education. We had little money or stuff… or so we thought.
When we had to get everything into a box and onto a truck, we saw how much we’d accumulated. We realized how easy it was to acquire what didn’t mean a lot to either of us. We’d bought items without considering their purpose or our need, then never used them. Rather than carry their dead weight to our new home, we discarded them.
I’m sure this sounds familiar. Purchasing consumer goods drives our economy. This isn’t inherently bad, of course, but our society’s emphasis on consumption often breeds discontentment. And that isn’t an accident.
In his short book Reasons to Stay Alive, Matt Haig writes, “The world is increasingly designed to depress us. Happiness isn’t very good for the economy. If we were happy with what we had, why would we need more… To be happy with your own non-upgraded existence. To be comfortable with our messy, human selves, would not be good for business.”
Jesus’ invitation to store up for yourselves treasures in heaven is our call to reimagine what brings value to our lives (v. 20). What we own can end up owning us unless we’re ruthlessly intentional about how we invest our time, talents, and treasure. Jesus wants us to be deliberate in these matters so that we’ll invest ourselves in kingdom principles rather than trivial pursuits.
What does “treasure in heaven” mean to you? How are you—or how could you begin—investing in this treasure today?
God, help us to be intentional with what we treasure. Reveal to us what is truly worth investing our lives in now and for eternity. Amen.