Each of us, regardless of our success or social standing, will stand trembling and naked before the God of the universe. We will no longer have anything we accumulated on earth. Empty and naked, we will stand before the King. All we will have are the rewards that we stored in Heaven based on the things we did for Jesus while we were alive on earth (Matthew 6:19-21). We accumulate heavenly rewards by serving God and others in His name; by sacrificing everything for the sake of building His Kingdom. Building treasure in Heaven requires us to daily put our trust in God for our provision; not in our money, possessions, or achievements. As we do the things He told us to do (see Matthew 25:31-46, James 1:27, and Ephesians 5:1-5), we will increase our treasure in Heaven.
Archives for September 2014
“Let us beware allowing our spiritual comforts to rise and fall with world news or the changing world situations. We who lean upon Jesus and trust in the watchful love of a heavenly Father are not dependent upon these things for our peace. For children of the new creation, the darker the night, the brighter faith shines and the sooner comes the morning.” These are the words of A.W. Tozer, written over fifty years ago. They are eerily relevant to our world today. I am amazed and thankful, even awestruck, at how those who dedicated their lives to God continue to speak to us long after their time on earth has past. In this era of terrorism, disease, and constant unrest, followers of Jesus should not allow the circumstances around us to affect the purpose of our lives.
The group of believers with whom I meet weekly recently started the video study based on Kyle Idleman’s excellent book, “Not a Fan”. It’s been a while since I read the book, but it was absolutely life changing for me, and I highly recommend you make it part of your annual reading list. I’ve written several articles in the past that were inspired by the book, but the group discussion has stirred some fresh thoughts in me and has challenged me to ask once again if I am truly a follower of Jesus or merely a fan. Am I sacrificing everything for the sake of following Him, or am I merely playing at this thing we call Christianity?
During my reading time recently, I came across a prayer that spoke the words I have been feeling deep in my heart: “Lord I pray that I will always keep my eyes on eternity and that the cares of this world will not distract me from my mission of serving You each day.” What a powerful and dangerous prayer! If we were to live our lives in this manner, we would appear to be quite “weird” in the eyes of our culture and would certainly alienate more than a few friends. What if we could cast off the cares of this world and concern ourselves only with the things of God’s Kingdom? If we could honestly pray that God would fix our eyes on Him and then really live that out, I think we would be amazed at what was possible.
Money is a tremendous tool when used appropriately. God blesses us so that we in turn will bless others. When we use what we have been given for His glory and to further His Kingdom, money is a great blessing. We are blessed with it by God so that we can bless others for God, which in turn brings glory to God. This is the proper use of what we have been entrusted to manage. It’s all about what we do with money that counts. In and of itself, money is useless, just bits of paper and metal. Put to proper use, it becomes amazingly powerful and good. There is, of course, a dark side to money as well.