Today’s Reading: Matthew 13-16
Matthew 13:44 – The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up. Then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field. (ESV)
The Christmas season in America is dominated by consumerism. Forecasts for 2012 indicate that spending associated with the holiday season will reach approximately $69 billion. No matter the status of our economy, people are going to spend their money during this time of year. We all have experienced the excitement of watching loved ones open the gifts we have purchased for them. It can honestly become addictive, especially when it comes to our children.
As exhilarating as giving gifts can be, we also have experienced the reality that the excitement over those gifts quickly fades. Before long, there is another “latest and greatest” available that makes our once awesome toy not so awesome anymore…(ahem…iPhone 5 anyone?) Why do we allow ourselves to continually be duped? We’re addicted to the buzz of new “stuff.” We see the newest gadget, trend, or toy and something inside us snaps. We go to great lengths, especially at Christmas, to provide these things for those we love, only to discover that by March they don’t even remember what you bought.
I have nothing against the exchange of gifts at Christmas time. In fact, I really enjoy giving gifts to those I love. However, we must be careful to remember that earthly treasure carries no eternal value. I once heard a friend of mine say, “the possessions you cherish today will be sold by your kids for pennies on the dollar.”
In the midst of this Advent season, we must always remember that true “treasure” is not found in the latest Wii console. No one would sell all they have to possess a video game system. However, in Matthew 13:44 Jesus describes to us a treasure that is worth all we have and more. The Kingdom of Heaven is the treasure that will last. This treasure was made available to us when, 2000 years ago, Jesus Christ was born, lived, died on the cross, and was raised again. So, during this Christmas season, let us not be distracted by the earthly treasures that rust and become moth-eaten. May our attention be focused upon the One who came to provide the true treasure of forgiveness, mercy, grace, and eternal life through His shed blood.
Prayer of Reflection: Father, in the midst of this season where the giving of gifts can easily slip into the driver’s seat of our attention, please help us remember where our true treasure is found. Thank you that, in Christ, we have the only treasure that will last, and it is worth more than all we have. Let us live and give this season in light of this truth.
Rest in Jesus,