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Matthew 6:19-24

“Do not store up for yourselves treasure on earth … But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven …” (verses 19-20)


Here are some reflections from a crisis moment three and a half years ago, along with a postscript giving the resolution:

(Summer 2019) We’re in the midst of trying to sell our house, having put an accepted offer on a new home, in an effort to downsize and eliminate some debt. We thought we were being wise, in that it was apparently still a seller’s market and there would be no issue with our sale. But the season changed, the housing market slumped, and the sale hasn’t yet happened. We complete on the new home this Friday, with financing in place that will begin, shortly, to eat into our equity. This is not where we planned to be.

So, was the motive wrong? Were we, all along, seeking to build up treasure on earth? My motives are usually mixed, even when I am most seeking the Lord – it is part of the human condition. So, here we are. And into this circumstance the scripture speaks: “store up … in heaven.”

It pushes further. “You cannot serve both God and money” (6:24). Which will command my thoughts and my attention in this season?


Lord, I want the issue (and the concern that rises in my heart) to direct my gaze toward you, rather than toward my bank account.


“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink … do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself” (6:25, 34). This isn’t careless abandon in the midst of need, nor blind head-in-the-sand avoidance of a pressing issue, but rather settled trust in the Father, knowing he knows our needs (6:32) – his hands are much bigger than mine; he’s already carrying it all anyway, so trust.


Father, therefore, even as I continue to pray (passionately!) for your resolution of this financial tension, I choose to trust that you will care for our every need, knowing that treasure in heaven is stored up as I keep my eyes on you. Rivet my attention, O Lord.


Postscript (Fall 2022): Our house stayed stubbornly un-sold. We closed on the new one and became proud (foolish?) owners of two homes. Month by month went by with hardly a soul even interested in taking a look at the residence we were trying to sell. Finally, a month before Christmas, we got an offer. What disappointment. It was so low-ball we didn’t even consider, but simply took the house off the market.

Meanwhile, my sister prompted us to run AirBNB to tide us over. I was pretty sure there wouldn’t be much interest in our area, but we went ahead, desperate. The Lord provided. We had enough renters to cover the financing while we waited for the market to turn, which it did, two months after Christmas, just shortly before COVID set in. We had multiple offers, got a good price, and were relieved of excessive debt. Phew.

It was another lesson in not worrying, but simply trusting. God is good.


Reflect: What practical concern of life is pressing most strongly on you today? How can you turn that concern into an occasion to store up treasure in heaven?


Photo by Roman Kraft on Unsplash

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