MATTHEW 6:20_But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven…
When you are consumed with something it fills your life. It takes over all your space – no room for anything else.
The love of wealth is so consuming the fruits of the Spirit have no growing space. The sad thing is those fruits are what every human craves. Bondage to wealth deceives. You believe wealth can buy what will satisfy your cravings. It just can’t be done. The fruits which the Spirit produces in you cannot be bought with money.
The first three fruits of the Spirit, love, joy, and peace are the most sought after virtues in existence. The wealthiest people on the planet would give their treasure to possess those virtues. These are virtues God uses to reward salty-lit-up disciples of Jesus. People who are not disciples have a thing going with their love of money – believing eventually it will satisfy.
Acts 5:1-3 (KJV) tells a story of the bondage of wealth: “But a certain man named Ananias, with Sapphira his wife, sold a possession, 2 And kept back part of the price, … 3 But Peter said, ‘Ananias, why hath satan filled thine heart to lie to the Holy Ghost, and to keep back part of the price of the land?'”
Peter said Ananias could have kept all his money. But when Ananias lied to keep from giving all, his money bondage was his destruction.
Magnificent Jesus, I want space for Your fruits to grow in my soul. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ cultivates fruit in me—I will give Him space!
MATTHEW 6:19_where moth and rust doth corrupt…
Jesus doesn’t want you to be consumed by anything but His love. And He doesn’t want you to hoard that – He wants you to give it away!
The Creator understands body, soul (mind, will, emotions), and spirit. He understands how they work independently and together. Remember John Donne’s no man is an island phrase? Whatever God’s ultimate plan is for your life will involve people. Some may be family, some may be friends, some may only be acquaintances, and some you may never meet. But God wants to teach you how to love the people He brings your way. In order to love freely, your heart must be free. A heart bound by the love of wealth simply can’t give itself away in a 180 degree topsy-turvy fashion.
Jesus gets a little graphic concerning possessions. They can rust. Moths can eat holes in them. Stuff breaks. It tears up. Earthly possessions are frail at best. Why would you let your heart get all wrapped up in stuff that breaks?
Psalm 49:16-17 (KJV), “Be not thou afraid when one is made rich, when the glory of his house is increased; 17 For when he dieth he shall carry nothing away: his glory shall not descend after him.”
What is made in this life will remain in the earth.
God of All Truth, Free my heart to love You and Your people. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ wants people in my life—He teaches me to love!
MATTHEW 6:18_shall reward thee openly.
God will reward you openly. Trust. Believe. But remember, God has His own time table, and it’s a perfect one. You can also trust and believe that!
God delights in rewarding His people. Another natural byproduct of love is to give – time, money, gifts. God is the creator of all things physical and spiritual. He knows how to reward, when to reward, what to reward (behavior or actions), and the kind of reward to give.
You can trust your Heavenly Father to give rewards perfectly designed for you. They are part of the wonderful plan God has for your life. God has a plan for everyone. There are those who do not choose to accept His plan. The circumstances of life, which are beyond your control: family, race, culture, disabilities, can never prevent you from achieving His plan – if you seek it.
Jeremiah 29:11-13 (KJV),“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end. 12 Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you. 13 And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart.”
God Who Cares, Thank You for Your plan for me. Nothing in this life can take it from me! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ has a plan for me—He will help me achieve it!
MATTHEW 6:12_And forgive us…
If Jesus taught no more than the first three words of this verse, He would have taught a vital part of prayer.
The Scribes and Pharisees saw life as a set of laws. They had the laws down pat, snug in their hip pockets (if they had hip pockets). They knew the rules, and kept them, why would they need forgiveness? That is, if all that mattered was rule keeping.
Jesus taught life as more about loving God and each other. He taught to give more than receive. This kind of life causes me to see my weaknesses and failures. That leads me to my knees to ask God’s forgiveness. Psalm 51 (KJV), “1 Have mercy upon me [King David], O God, according to thy lovingkindness: according unto the multitude of thy tender mercies blot out my transgressions. 2 Wash me thoroughly from mine iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. 3 For I acknowledge my transgressions: and my sin is ever before me. 4 Against thee, thee only, have I sinned, and done this evil in thy sight: that thou mightest be justified when thou speakest, and be clear when thou judgest.”
King David asks forgiveness for his sin. He also acknowledges something very important—his sin was primarily against God.
Any and all sins are against God.
Forgiving God, I know when I have wronged Your people I have wronged You. Forgive me and change me! In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ desires to forgive—He wants me to ask Him!
MATTHEW 6:11_this day…
Psalm 118:24 (KJV), “This is the day which the LORD hath made; we will rejoice and be glad in it.” Each day is new. Stop and think about that. It is brand new. It is not yesterday. Neither is it tomorrow. It is today! Every day has new needs and every day your Father has an abundant supply. It is His joy to bless you each day.
Lamentations 3:22-23 (KJV), “It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not.23 They are new every morning: great is Thy faithfulness.”
Here is another part of God’s daily giving. God’s mercy protects from being consumed – daily.
If you think to be consumed is to be eaten you are not entirely wrong. The things that hold you in bondage eat away at life. You can be consumed by lust, greed, envy, bitterness, unforgiveness, and depression.
These are not come-and-go bondages. They consume daily – eating away love, joy, and peace. Because God is faithful and full of compassion, His mercy saves from being consumed by bondage. Just like each day is new – so are God’s mercies of compassion and faithfulness.
Freedom can be a process. But compassion is not. Just don’t cave in to doubt. God delivers. It’s a part of who He is. This may be the day for you!!!
I can understand why Jesus teaches, Give us this day!
Merciful God, Praise You that Your compassion saves me daily. In the powerful name of Jesus, Amen.
Christ’s mercy is new every day—He gives it to me!