Today’s devotion builds on the thoughts from Sunday’s Sermon – Week 5 of “Fan or Follower – Invest Wisely” (LISTEN HERE).
Matthew 6:20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
Jesus’ encouragement is clear, “Store up for yourselves treasures in heaven.”
This week we have reflected on what lasts and what doesn’t. Yesterday’s devotion pointed out the eternal value of nurturing our relationship with the Lord Jesus and his word. Today the third way to invest in that which will last is to live out the faith God has given to us.
Works of faith are recognized and rewarded by the Lord.
To be clear, the living of our faith is in RESPONSE to the faith and forgiveness we have been given and in no way is earning a spot in heaven. Yet the Scriptures imply that works of faith are noticed and affirmed by our Father in heaven.
Matthew 19:28 Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, at the renewal of all things, when the Son of Man sits on his glorious throne, you who have followed me will also sit on twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel. 29 And everyone who has left houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or wife or children or fields for my sake will receive a hundred times as much and will inherit eternal life. 30 But many who are first will be last, and many who are last will be first.
Yet, living out our faith isn’t a “God did you see that?” type of effort. Because we are simply living our faith from a heart of faith and not a heart of obligation or earning a spot in heaven, we really aren’t keeping track or even noticing…but God does.
Matthew 25:34 “Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father; take your inheritance, the kingdom prepared for you since the creation of the world. 35 For I was hungry and you gave me something to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you invited me in, 36 I needed clothes and you clothed me, I was sick and you looked after me, I was in prison and you came to visit me.’
37 “Then the righteous will answer him, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you something to drink? 38 When did we see you a stranger and invite you in, or needing clothes and clothe you? 39 When did we see you sick or in prison and go to visit you?’ 40 “The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’
The righteous didn’t notice and weren’t keeping track…but the King was. God noticed. The reward? That’s up to the Lord. Our life is investing in living out our faith because that is what life is all about.
We ask questions such as:
- Lord, this is the day you have made and given to me, how do you want me to invest if for you?
- Lord, the earth is yours and everything in it, how do you want me to invest the wealth you have entrusted to me?
- Lord, the people and relationships you have given me are for me to let my light of faith shine. Show me who needs your love and grace today.
As we ask questions like this, the Spirit of God orients our life to our heart which loves and treasures him. As we treasure him, we spend our life storing up treasures in heaven.
Apply: What question is helpful to begin your day to orient your day to storing up treasures in heaven?
Prayer: Lord God, thank you for investing in us that we might be your own and live each day for you. Guide us every day to invest wisely in those things that last forever. AMEN.