Tag Archives: seek first the kingdom of god

Storing Treasures In Heaven

I remember doing a paper in college on the brokenness of the United States’ Social Security system. All the research I had done showed that the system was upside down and would not be able to sustain the retiring Boomers. It was recommended that Xers and younger should invest in their retirement through 401k’s and other means. Because of all that, we each have a mindset of doing what we can now to make sure we have enough in our former years. Even this week, I spent a few hours researching stocks, their performance, their diversification and ability to grow over time. I think it’s good to have a plan for the retirement years, but I’m left to wonder how much time, effort and energy do I spend planning for eternity.

When compared to eternity, a lifetime here is nothing more than a nanosecond. How much more should we be investing in the afterlife? In Matthew 6:20-21, Jesus said, “Instead, stockpile heavenly treasures for yourselves that cannot be stolen and will never rust, decay, or lose their value. For your heart will always pursue what you value as your treasure” (TPT). That last verse should have each of us looking at what we’re pursuing in this life. Where are your energies focused? Are they for things that matter now or for eternity? Again, I think it’s wise to plan for your financial future here, but it’s critical to plan for your eternity there. God’s economy is different than ours and how you invest in it is different too.

You and I must value the same things that God values if we’re going to store up treasures in Heaven. God has always valued and cared for people, especially the members of society we seem to ignore. He values giving justice to those who need it, but don’t have a voice to get it. He values mercy and grace, specifically to those who don’t deserve it. He also giving of our possessions more than hoarding them. Finally, later on in this chapter, Jesus reminds us that we must seek His Kingdom first before we seek our own. I believe when we put His priorities above our own, we store up treasures in Heaven. You can’t check your heavenly bank account through an app, but you can measure it through lives changed.

Photo by N. on Unsplash

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The Pursuit Of Happiness


The Declaration of Independence of The United States says that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are among our inalienable rights as humans given to us by God. We all have the desire to live, to be free, and to be happy. So many of us have spent a lifetime in the pursuit of happiness. We think of we have more money, we’ll be happy. We think of we had a better job, a better house, a faster car, more friends, a bigger church, more toys, or (fill in the blank), we’ll be happy so we pursue those things.

The inalienable right granted to us was the pursuit of happiness, not the pursuit of things though. Yes, God wants you to be happy, but He wants you to find it in Him. If you’ve pursued things to make you happy, you can attest that once you had those things, your happiness faded. They fulfilled you for a short while, but then you wanted a better whatever it was that you pursued. When you pursue things for your happiness, you’ll never be satisfied. You will always want more. That’s why we have the phrase, “Money doesn’t buy happiness.”

The pursuit of happiness is different than the pursuit of things to make you happy. You can still desire those other things, but you have to understand that’s not what’s going to fulfill your longing to be happy. Psalm 37:4 says, “Seek your happiness in the Lord, and he will give you your heart’s desire” (GNT). When we pursue our happiness in God, a funny thing happens. He begins to give us the things we desire. It’s a matter of priorities.

Jesus said it this way in Matthew 6:33, “But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you” (ESV). It’s when we seek Him, His Kingdom, and His desires that we will find our happiness. All the other things are a side note to life. Yes, it’s ok to want them and to even have them, but we have to understand that if they are what we are pursuing to make us happy, we I’ll be disappointed. If we will seek our happiness in Him, we will be truly happy and He will bless us with things that will enhance our happiness.

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