“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light, but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness! “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.” Matthew 6:19-34
Jesus says, “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth.” But, what other options do we have? Where else would we keep our treasures? Earth is where we live. This world is what we know because it’s what we see. And what’s marketed is building bigger homes, buying more toys, experiencing epic adventures, and traveling the world. Just scroll through Instagram and you’ll find a whole lot of things we treasure. So, it shouldn’t be too surprising if we find ourselves doing the very thing Jesus tells us to avoid.
But, when Jesus instructs us to “lay up” treasures in heaven, is he saying he doesn’t want us to build, buy, experience, or travel? Does he want us to simply sit and dream about heaven every day, wishing we were someplace else? No. That’s the thing. The trouble we have with this passage is that we don’t have a clear picture of what the Kingdom of Heaven looks like. Still for many of us the Kingdom feels vague and we’re unsure how to envision it. For us to grow in desire for Jesus’ Kingdom we must attempt to seek or learn how the Kingdom works.
Here, Jesus reminds us that our hearts are always seeking something, always treasuring something, and therefore always serving something. So, why not seek to learn and understand and grow under the banner of Jesus’ Kingdom, one that resembles Heaven right here and now? Seek a Kingdom of love, where everyone is known and valued and welcomed in as family. Seek a Kingdom of goodness, where society is flourishing under the guidance and direction of a good master. Seek a Kingdom of harmony, where wrongs are forgiven, where relationships are strengthened, and where collaboration makes things better. Today, remember where you have caught a glimpse of the Kingdom of Heaven and choose one small way to live under the banner of Jesus’ Kingdom today. The more you attempt to live out this type of Kingdom, the more it will reinforce this true treasure in your heart.
By Yvonne Biel