Weekly Wisdoms for the week of August 30, 2021
The New Testament author James observes that life is very temporary compared to eternity: What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes (James 4:14).
Not only is life temporary, but everything you stockpile in this life is also lost when you die. Several millennia ago, Job rightly observed: Naked I came from my mother's womb, and naked I will depart (Job 1:21).
Since life is fleeting and possessions are worthless at the end of life, Jesus wisely instructs us not to amass treasures on earth: Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal (Matthew 6:19-20).
Instead of spending your life to build up things that are like the morning dew, use your life to store up for yourselves treasures in heaven—lasting treasures. How do we do that? By glorifying Christ in life and in death.
The Apostle Paul demonstrates in Philippians 3:7-8 his passion for living life to do what lasts into eternity: But whatever was to my profit I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ. Paul willingly exchanged earthly profit, which doesn't last, for eternal gain (see 1 Corinthians 2:2).
Don't spend your life to gain things that are no more permanent than mist. Use your brief voice to magnify and exclaim the glory of God (Isaiah 43:7; Psalm 90:14; 1 Corinthians 10:31). You have... Only one life, it will soon be past; only what's done for Christ will last.
In Western culture, many people place great value on possessions and on what one owns. This greedy mentality is embodied in the phrase: "He who dies with the most toys wins."
Yet when you die, you can't take anything with you: Naked a man comes from his mother's womb, and as he comes, so he departs (Ecclesiastes 5:15). It's no wonder that, when faced with the immediacy of death, one most easily realizes that everyday things are meaningless in the scope of eternity.
In Philippians 3:5-6, Paul lists many reasons why he could boast about himself. Yet, he recognizes that they pale in comparison to eternity, which is why he considers them rubbish in order to gain Christ (Philippians 3:9).
All this "stuff" we chase after will be gone. Therefore, make it your aim to live with eternal purpose and invest in eternal things; to spend all you have on what lasts forever.
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