Let’s be real, we all like nice things and if we are to be honest with one another we probably are pretty fanatical about a certain thing or two. For example, I used to be addicted to handbags and the pricier the better! I have since been delivered from that. but I had other treasures that I had stored up as well which I’ve had to come to terms with. Your treasure can be anything; I had a family member tell me recently that they would not give up their Facebook page under any circumstance. My husband used to be addicted to Madden on Playstation 3, and just like my handbags and I, he has since been delivered but at one time asking that man to not play Madden would be like asking asking a prosperity pimp to not take an offering. 😉
We treasure certain items above others; how many of us can be like Abraham and take our beloved children up a mountain to slay them as a sacrifice? Ok wait, first let’s pretend that our children are Absolutely Perfect Little Angels, now answer that question. Could you? Of course not, because we treasure our children even when they are acting like vagrants from hell. What if you knew with an absolute certainty that God wanted you to give up something that you treasure? Would you? If it were that six-figure job, or that amazing automobile with all of the bells and whistles, what about the home that has provided you endless years of comfort? Could you give it all up if God asked? We have all, at one time or another, heard the scripture in Luke 12:34, For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
There are many hidden treasures that people have stored up, which they don’t even know are blocking them from the promises of God. Have you ever felt the urging in your spirit to give up a person – boyfriend/girlfriend, friends, or significant other? If you feel like “I just can’t leave them” or “I need them, I love them and they love me”, but they won’t commit, then that person has become your treasure (Amos 3:3). I had an issue like this that I did not realize had become a strongman (or treasure) in my life, but it had. It was music! I was listening to a lot of music that in no way, shape or form glorified the God that I serve, and when my eyes were finally opened I had to dispose of decades of music that I had collected. It had become my treasure. I cried while I got rid of it all, but felt so free once it was done. I was like the rich young ruler, I had kept the commandments, but I was holding on to my stuff; however, once Jesus challenged me I gave it up to follow after his righteousness.
Now when Jesus heard these things, he said unto him, Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me. (Luke 18:22).
The young ruler was “sorrowful” and turned away because his treasure lie in his possessions, so he did not want to give them up, to sell them and give the money to the poor. Jesus instructed his disciples first that if they wanted to follow him that they had to deny themselves (Mark 8:34-35). What does denying yourself entail? It means to disown the things that you are used to, get rid of the old you and your ways, to forget about who you were; essentially you will be disposing of every thing that you formerly treasured, even if it is your old way of thinking.
I quoted Luke 12:34 above, but if we look at the preceding passages there is so much more:
Consider the lilies, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. 28But if God so clothes the grass, which is alive in the field today, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith! 29And do not seek what you are to eat and what you are to drink, nor be worried. 30For all the nations of the world seek after these things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31Instead, seek his kingdom, and these things will be added to you.
32 “Fear not, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys (Luke 27-33, ESV).
Don’t allow possessions, people, attitudes, or beliefs to become your treasure. Jesus and Jesus alone is worthy of that honor.
A Pastor’s Wife