“Where your treasure is, your heart will be also,” Jim, my little brother, repeated. His white-blonde hair reflected the sunshine of a warm Oklahoma summer day.
Many years ago, Mom gave us memory verses to learn when we were young. Sometimes Jim reversed heart and treasure and he would be patiently corrected. Jim would repeat the verse correctly….always stating, “Matthew 6:21.”
I wondered about that. If your heart is in the Jesus-place, it is priceless, isn’t it?
“Don’t hoard treasure down here where it gets eaten by moths and corroded by rust or—worse!—stolen by burglars. Stockpile treasure in heaven, where it’s safe from moth and rust and burglars. It’s obvious, isn’t it? The place where your treasure is, is the place you will most want to be, and end up being.” Matthew 6:19-21 (The Message)
I remember the treasures I have had in my life time. I remember learning to make paper boats. For an entire afternoon, I tore page after page from the Sears Catalog and created boats. The pile of boats grew to a bushel basket size. Then Mother insisted I clean up my closet. “But Mom, maybe I can sell these boats.” A treasure-ownership can be a fleeting experience.
Then came a hand-carved wooden knife that had a burned designed on the handle and an ink drawing by my voice teacher. In my ‘scrapbook’, I saved the small fuse from a boy friend. There are some dripping rose petals from some forgotten corsage, a voice recital program and and pictures of singing in a small opera.
As time passed, I found that I have a different measurement of treasures. My treasures were the treasures of my parents and grandparents. I gathered pictures, two chipped glasses and a bowl from Grosmom Siemens; the ‘Anna’ Bowl, a gold rimmed bowl handed down from my great grandmother, that is to go to our daughter and her daughter; the first dishes my mother bought on her own in 1925; a painting of the guardian angel like the one that hung on Mother’s wall as a girl; pictures of an assortment of grandparents and great grandparents; books, Mother’s poetry, articles and stories and the Who’s Who book that I had to buy (?).
Now, in the latter part of life treasures are not material. Earthly treasures are things that rust and moth cannot destroy. They are not items that have to be hidden and protected. An appreciation for ideas, for friendships, for beauty of God’s creation becomes my treasure.
About a year ago, I moved something from a shelf, and it tumbled down. There was no way I could grab the items that fell – the goblets that had been wedding presents to my Mother, circa 1927-1928. It was freeing, for now I didn’t have the treasures – they became slivers of glass on the floor. Treasures.
What do I treasure now? Love – love of my husband of 57 years, our children and their children and on to the 3rd generation and extended family, love of our church family and friends. Most of all I treasure the relationship with my Lord and Savior. Creation sings a song praising the Creator each day. Belonging to God, and living for Him, is my joy and my treasure.
Isaiah 55:12 – You will go out in joy and be led forth in peace; the mountains and hills will burst into song before you, and all the trees of the field will clap their hands.
Psalm 98:4-9 – Shout your praises to God, everybody! Let loose and sing! Strike up the band! Round up an orchestra to play for God, Add on a hundred-voice choir. Feature trumpets and big trombones, Fill the air with praises to King God. Let the sea and its fish give a round of applause, With everything living on earth joining in. Let ocean breakers call out, “Encore!” And mountains harmonize the finale— A tribute to God when he comes, When he comes to set the earth right.
I want you woven into a tapestry of love, in touch with everything there is to know of God. Then you will have minds confident and at rest, focused on Christ, God’s great mystery. All the richest treasures of wisdom and knowledge are embedded in that mystery and nowhere else.
And we’ve been shown the mystery! I’m telling you this because I don’t want anyone leading you off on some wild-goose chase, after other so-called mysteries, or “the Secret.” Colossians 1:2-4 (The Message)
Am I perfect in Him? Far from it. Every day He keeps pulls me back in so many ways and reminds me of Who He is. He is perfectly Perfect in all ways. He is faithful. In my imperfection, I am reminded that when He is in me and I am in Him, and I become filled with the treasure of His Spirit. For He makes me, a clay jar, all that IS worthwhile. He lights up my darkness. (II Corinthians 4:6)
II Corinthians 4:7 – But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.