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Tuesday
Feb062018

February 2018

In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus makes the statement, “For where you treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matthew 6: 21.  In other words, He is stating that if we examine what is most important to us, we will find that which we love most.  So, if w store up and collect something, it could be that this is what we love the most.  Now I’m not talking about collecting as a hobby.  It is highly unlikely (although not impossible) that stamps, or baseball cards, or rare coins could become the most important things in our lives.  Generally, people who collect as a hobby simply enjoy the ongoing pursuit of something that can be hard to find, not unlike the drive in those of us who like to hunt or fish.

What Jesus was talking about in this statement, is not focused so much on that which is collected, but rather the heart of the one who is doing the collecting.  What are you putting away in storage?   Why are you putting it there?  Are we storing stuff?  Are we storing something that is more valuable?  Don’t get me wrong.  Stuff in itself is not necessarily a bad thing.  I have quite a bit of stuff, and I like most of that stuff.  Our house for example.  We have lived in our current home for almost 15 years.  We have invested many dollars as we have been making mortgage payments all that time and still have a little way to go.  Added to that, we have remodeled the kitchen, the master bedroom, both bathrooms, and a few other places.  We have replaced the roof and about half of the flooring.  As with all houses, there is always more to do and we will keep doing things to upgrade the house.  Beth and I really like our home.  We spend a lot of time there.  We entertain on a regular basis.  We find it as a place of quiet retreat when we need a short break.  Both of us have lived longer in this house than in any other house, including our childhood homes.  But, we are well aware that it is almost certain that there will come a time, when we will choose to move out of that house.  Someday, we will hire a realtor, find a buyer, make a deal on the house, and move out.  And when we do that, there will likely be a little sadness, but we will not be traumatized.  It’s just a house, a nice house, but still just a house.

Now, on the other hand, what do we really treasure?  What is there, that if we lost it that loss would devastate us?  This is an important question.  While I cannot speak for Beth, I do not think that she would disagree with my following observations.  As I think about this, there are a few things that I treasure.  There is my family, (my wife, my children, and their children) the loss of any one of those would be devastating.  My heart would be broken.  There is the church, (Boyd Avenue Baptist Church) if I could no longer be a part of this wonderful body, I do not know what I would do.  Granted, there will come a time (no date picked out yet) when I will no longer be the pastor.  But currently, it is my full intention to remain a part of this great body and follow its new leadership whoever that may be.  So, as I answer this question, what do I truly treasure, the two things that hold my heart the strongest are my family and my church.  But, there is one more thing that as I contemplate losing it would be even more devastating than all else.  What if I lost the love of God?  Not my love for Him, but His love for me.  I cannot fathom this loss.  For if God stopped loving me, what value would there be in any of my other treasure?

Good News!!  I cannot lose that last mentioned treasure!  A tragedy could strike and I could lose any or all of my family (in this life).  An unforeseeable circumstance could arise and I could have to move far away and never see any of my dear Boyd Avenue family again.  But, there is nothing in all of creation that can separate me from the love that God has for me.  Romans 8: 35-39 asks and answers this question.  “Who can separate us from the love of Christ?”  The answer: “For I am persuaded that not even death of life, angels or rulers, things present or things to come, hostile powers, height or depth, or any other created thing will have the power to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord!”

So, I’ve answered the question:  What do I treasure?  What do I hold deepest in my heart?  But, of those things that I treasure the most, the only one that is absolutely enduring is the love that Jesus has for me.  Yes, that indeed is a treasure that cannot decay, nor can it be taken away.  Where is your heart?  What do you treasure?

 

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