Simply Put

BY BETH GREEN

Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. ~Matthew 6:19-21

Accumulation and complacency are ideas that have become my enemy. Just recently, Kelly and I started to go through the packed boxes in our storage unit. Seeing all that clutter got me to thinking about my inner boxes of accumulation and complacency. Accumulation of goods takes up physical space, while complacency awards me the luxury to coast in the tides of status quo, and at times grow unaware that I’ve fallen into that zone of comfort.

Why do we feel like we deserve the things we accumulate? Because we work hard? I know Kelly and I’ve worked hard for these boxes of things that we once so valued. And, yet, here they’ve remained, untouched, caged up for over two years. And now, being sorted through to give away.

Complacency is similar. We cling to the familiar, the comfortable, our treasures. We do everything within our control to work hard and achieve a life of comfort, security, and happiness. The lack of purpose and meaning lose their value when overwhelmed by “the things of this world.”

When I catch myself coasting through the channels of complacency, I run to Scripture. Not only did the Matthew 6:19-21 verses convict me of what I truly treasure compared to what God treasures, but also Hebrews 12:1, which says, Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off EVERYTHING that hinders AND the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.

The stuff in our storage unit was weighing us down. It was time to “throw off” what hindered us in a physical sense. And how freeing once we did!  In a spiritual sense, I had to question and ponder what I valued in my heart. What do I spend the majority of my thoughts on? Does what I value, what I think about, how I live line up with what God values? Are these the things He desires me to have my focus ?

Storage is not a bad thing at all! But when we begin to “treasure” those things and are not willing to let them go when they are weighing us down, then they become an interference for our focus.   My time, my talents, my treasures must align with God’s priorities. I must allow God to transform any selfish ways in me, and make them selfless in service to others and for His glory.

It’s so easy to make the world’s ways a priority over God’s. So easy! The comforts of this world are tempting. I know that if I don’t check in with God daily on where my heart, spirit, and possessions reside, I will easily fall into the trap of my two enemies: accumulation and complacency.