Be Ready

“For where your treasure is there your heart will be also.
Be dressed readiness, and keep your lamps lit.”
Luke 12:34-35

I have way too many treasures!  They all require time and maintainance.  Right now most of them are out of their boxes and are finding a place in our new home.  Some are relegated to the attic and others to the back of a lower cupboard shelf.  Still others are put on a shelf temporarily until they are needed.  Some just sit around and are pretty, others are functional.  And then there are those who have outlived their usefulness and are consigned to the Garage Sale box. 

As I think about all my earthly treasures, I am at peace.  They do not rule over me.  If a fire claimed them all, I would be okay.  I am grateful for what God has provided.  I want to use my resources for His kingdom and glory.  I recognize that it all belongs to God and that I am just a steward.  A very thankful steward, but a steward none the less. I know that these possessions are not my greatest treasures and I hold on to them loosely.

When Garrett, our oldest, was a baby, I had several porcelain dolls that I had sitting around the apartment.  One day he broke one.  I came to a moment of truth.  My child was more important than my things.  I boxed up everything breakable and baby-proofed the house.  My treasure was my son and I was going to enjoy him and let him explore in a safe environment.  I now have five treasured sons.  They make me things and buy me things.  All of which I appreciate greatly.  But time with them, a phone call, an email, a card, means so much more!  They are my eternal treasures and I will always make them a priority.

What treasures do you have stored up in heaven?  Children, friends, a spouse, someone that you have led to the Lord, someone that you are discipling?  Maybe your treasure is a heart of purity and tears of suffering with a sweet spirit.  Or maybe your treasure is a pure love and acts of great compassion and charity.  The most important treasure that you can store up in heaven is a growing relationship with God through Jesus Christ.  Your prayers, your tears, your sacrifices of time and resources are all being stored up in heaven. 

In a moment of great sorrow here on earth, remember where your treasure is and your heart will follow along.  Be dressed in readiness and keep your lamp lit.  Readiness is to be worn about you whereever you go, whatever you are doing, all the time.  Keeping your lamp lit is a reference to being filled continually with the Holy Spirit.  Even while doing our earthly tasks, duties, and responsibilities, our hearts can be ready for the Lord”s return.  When you see Him in the sky or He calls you home through death, don’t look back with regret or longing for the things of earth.  Be ready to run into His arms.  If you are reading this and saying that you are not ready, that there are things that you want to do first or things that you don’t want to let go of, pray about it.  Ask God to help you to surrender these things to His keeping. 

Keep in constant contact with God by practicing His presence all day long.  Pray and praise, sing and dance, weep and be still before the Lord.  Then your treasure will be in heaven and the things of this earth will not have a hold on you.  Either you rule over your possessions, or they rule you.

Hint of the Day:  Sometimes it is hard for children to let go of their possessions.  Many families have a rule that if a child gets something new, then something old must be given away or sold. Others will have a general clean out once a year.  Some children will be clingers and others will give freely.  Teach your clingers to keep and appreciate a few special things, but to release the others. Teaching your children to respect their property is good, but teaching them that a giving heart and a sweet spirit for others is more important. 

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