Wednesday, June 15, 2011

where your treasure lies....

*disclaimer: this post is written to my christian readers. all are welcome to read it, but if you are not a christian, it doesn't apply to you!

*disclaimer part 2: this may offend you! i'm open to any and all discussion. fire away!

i've debated talking about this for awhile. mainly because i think it will make people angry (what's new?). however, it needs to be said. or at least, i need to say it. the topic i'm alluding to is where our values lie. what things are important to us. "us" being the body of Christ. the Bible tells us that where our treasure lies, there also our heart will lie. so i ask you, where does your treasure lie? your career? your children? your clothes? a sports team? your bank account? now most of us would say "of course not! my treasure is Jesus!"... but does your life reflect that? or at the end of the day do you end up looking like everyone else?

specifically, the scripture says this: Matthew 6:19 "Don't store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy and thieves do not break in and steal. where your treasure is, there the desire of you heart will be also. "

so again, i ask, what are your treasures? here's what's bothering me: i look around at a lot of the christians i know and on the surface they look like everyone else. they drive really nice cars. they live in big houses in wonderful neighborhoods. their kids wear pricey clothes and attend the best schools. they throw their money in the offering basket on sunday and that's the extent of their sacrifice for the Lord. they look like everybody else in this world. their toiling away at the rat race and they're winning! they make good money and have a 401k and their kids will never have to wear clothes from walmart. so is church attendance enough to separate them from their non-church attending neighbors? obviously i'm making a generalization. i know lots of people who have a heart for the Lord, who love Him dearly and truly. as long as they don't have to give up too much of their comfortable lifestyle in the process. they can't afford to go on a mission trip or stay home with their kids or be in ministry because they don't want to give up their standard of living to do so. they will tell you all day about the things they can't afford but don't worry, they'll never miss paying their $125 cable bill or their very large car payment. what would happen if all the christians lived in the "good" neighborhoods? what i wonder is what would this world look like if everyone who loved Jesus sacrificed their own creature comforts and put all of their treasure towards reaching the lost? towards feeding the poor? towards building churches? how would that change the face of this earth?

i'm not saying that all christians should be poor. i'm not saying that things like a nice car or home are bad, in and of themselves. what i'm saying is how much are you sacrificing for Jesus? and i don't mean sacrificing like putting some canned goods in the bin for the food pantry or serving in the nursery. i mean painful, stretching sacrifice. sacrifice that you can only stomach through faith. sacrifice that hurts. stepping out of your race for the american dream and stepping in to path set forth for you from the Lord. maybe that's giving up your expensive house to live in a lesser neighborhood and stay home with your children. maybe that's sacrificing vacations and nights out to adopt a family-less child. maybe it's controlling your spending in order to get out of debt and go into ministry. maybe it's just cutting out all your eating out each month and giving that money away. i don't know what your personal sacrifice is supposed to be. that's between you and the Lord. what i do know is that the majority of american christians i know are living a really comfortable lifestyle and i can't help but wonder if we're missing it? if on the glorious day, when we stand before our Lord, we will feel confident to say "I didn't do much for the poor Lord, but i never missed a cable bill"

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