Tuesday, April 03, 2012

A Life That Counts (4)

Principle #4 in my series Living A Life That Counts is learning that life is about desiring the right treasure. No one just exists, we are all after something. Call it purpose, direction, meaning, or just fulfilling needs - we all believe that our life would be better if we could just get, have, obtain, or discover ____________ (something)! Our greatest struggle in life is choosing the spiritual over the physical when it comes to filling in that blank. "Seek first the kingdom of God," said Jesus, "and all these things (the other stuff we might put in the blank) will be added to us" It's not whether or not we have a perceived treasure we are hunting after, but what kind of treasure are we hunting for.
Anyone who has lived and learned long enough, and/or studied the Bible well enough knows that recognition and riches rise to the top of the list of our treasure hunting priorities. I introduced the topic by reminding everyone about all the movies that have been produced that are about or include treasure hunting. From there we needed to make the point that "treasure" is a relative term or concept. "One man's trash is another man's treasure." The bigger principle though is the fact that a treasure can be about valuables or values. For instance, Saving Private Ryan was about the value of one life, and Ground Hog Day is about the value of learning to be a giver. We see the contrast in values in the Bible. I used three examples: Simon vs. Simon = Simon the Sorcerer of Acts 8 wanting to buy the gifts of the Holy Spirit to boost his business, verses Simon Peter declaring that ONLY Jesus had the words of life in John 6:66-69; Recognition vs. Sharing = the need for praise that Ananias and Sapphira had in Acts 5, verses the love and togetherness of the believers in Acts 4:32-33; and Rust Storage vs. Trust Storage = Jesus' comments about where we should put our treasures in Matthew 6:19-21.
Just using passages from the Bible, here are some principles to help us pick the right treasure:
1. We are a treasure to God! (Deut.7:6) He declares us valuable!
2. We won't see a treasure if we're not looking for it! (Matt.6:22-23) Everything depends on how we choose to look at it.
3. We must understand the value of a treasure! (Matt.13:44-45) See it and know it when we find it.
4. We must choose God's treasure! (Heb.11:24-26) Like Moses did.
5. The greatest treasure of all is Jesus! (Col.2:2-3)
6. God placed his greatest treasure in us! (2 Cor.4:5-10) He placed it in jars of clay (us) and while the jars are fragile the treasure is not!
Conclusion: Seeking is directly connected to the value of the treasure. We will only seek God if we understand what he has done, how much he loves us, and what he has planned for us. (Heb.11:6 - "He rewards those who earnestly seek him.")

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