Treasure in Heaven
(Mark 10:21, Matt. 6:19-21, Luke 12:31-34)
Seek first the kingdom of God, and all that we need will be added to us. I looked at the gospels as I began to write this and was surprised to find this very thought in the passage from Luke. I had been thinking about what it means to seek first. It becomes more than a passing thought or taking a few minutes to read or pray, and then move on. As we go on, we find it becomes the first priority continually. The Father and His kingdom are always first.
I began this reflection by reminding myself to store up treasure in heaven and wanted to read Jesus’ words. A man has said that we need to pay attention to Jesus’ very words. We receive much help, even an impartation of spiritual life, through the words of the writers of what we call the New Testament. We appreciate and are fed by these lovers of God. But Jesus own words are most valuable. He said His words are Spirit and they are Life. They are the incorruptible seed of which Peter wrote. As was written for the seven churches of Asia, after Jesus had taken His seat in heaven, “Let him who has ears to hear, hear what the Spirit says to the churches.” So let us remind ourselves of all that Jesus said.
The more we follow the leading of His Spirit, we store up treasure in heaven. Do good works and give. Fast and pray, but do it in secret as lovers of your Father in heaven. Those thoughts are spoken by Jesus in the context of the verses referenced in Matt. 6. Read that entire chapter again. How easily we are caught up with earthly issues which will pass away. As I have lived my life in the U.S. I have watched believers, true disciples of the Lamb, give of their time and energy to impact the culture. I have been there and remain involved in community service. Yet as ambassadors of an eternal kingdom we are called to not be entangled in the affairs of this world that we may serve in another battle.
While the tension is real and the battle can be intense, the call of the Lord is always to come to Him when burdened. He tells us to receive His yoke and learn of Him. We learn to stay in His yoke and maintain that humility with Him in the presence of our Father. He is ever our friend and savior. Yes He is Lord and we are not, We are His friends, His members, His bride. Are we keeping Him as our reward? He responds to our prayers. Things are changed and battles won. Some fall in the process. Some are lost. Some are exposed. Some, when exposed, repent and are knowing His salvation. Others harden their hearts and continue in rebellion. We often view a mass of humanity but He sees each one, even that one lost sheep while 99 are safe in the fold.
In another place, we read to set our affections on things above where Christ sits. May our focus be on Him as we seek the kingdom. It is easy for some of us to look for the right things to do, to make all this work, to find a better life. We are wired for laws, rather than relationship. Do the “right thing” and you will be ok. Without the Spirit, we miss His ways. Moses asked to learn His ways. He had seen, and all Israel had seen, His works. His hand in their lives but only two in that day learned His ways. We are not in that day, that the Lord should have only two witnesses! In this day, He has revealed Himself in His Son. The law came through Moses. We honor that man but a greater has come. Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. In Psalms we read His ways are lovingkindness and truth. David experienced His ways in his lifetime. Today the way is more clearly displayed to many.
The way is simple and is narrow. We don’t like the narrow but as you pass through a time of His discipline, you find yourself in a broad place and discover new wealth in Him. Don’t quit along the way and miss what He intends for you. Weeping may last for a night but joy comes in the morning. A dear brother reminded us on a Sunday morning, this world is a wilderness. Don’t be distracted, don’t be entangled in it. Keep you eyes on the prize where Christ sits, waiting for you to come. Meet with Him today. And then, walk with Him every day.