Your House is Going to Burn! What Will You Do With Your Stuff?

by Joe Plemon on March 11, 2011

Did you hear about the guy who, even though he knew his house was going to burn, continued to fill it with every possession he had? Crazy? Well, yes. But my hunch is that you know this guy. In fact, he may be you. What am I talking about?

Just this: It is all going to burn. Read this prophecy:

“But the day of the Lord will come as unexpectedly as a thief. Then the heavens will pass away with a terrible noise, and the very elements themselves will disappear in fire, and the earth and everything on it will be found to deserve judgment. Since everything around us is going to be destroyed like this, what holy and godly lives you should live, looking forward to the day of God and hurrying it along. On that day, He will set the heavens on fire, and the elements will melt away in the flames”. 2 Peter 3: 10-12

Our cars — our houses — our bank accounts — our collectables – indeed everything we have accumulated – will all meet the same fate: fire.

But Joe, I already know that I can’t take my stuff with me. What difference does it make if my stuff burns? I won’t be around anyway.”

You CAN take it with you.

Good point. Except for one thing: it is possible to take some of it with you. According to Jesus, all you need to do is store your treasures in heaven.

Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal.” Mat 6:20

“OK. This is getting weird. How do I store treasures in heaven?”

I confess that I don’t have all the answers, but the key word has to be “eternal”. God is eternal. Heaven is eternal. Therefore, anything that we do which serves God’s purposes has eternal significance and will therefore transcend this current world into the future one. It doesn’t even have to be huge or dramatic, for Jesus promised that “whoever gives a cup of water because he belongs to Christ will by no means lose his reward”. Mark 9:41

Therefore, I am going to strive to lay up treasures in heaven. Will some of my stuff burn?  No doubt. Probably way too much.  But I like knowing that I am pulling stuff out of my earthly house instead of stacking it in.

After all, it is all going to burn.

Readers: I covet your thoughts.   Can you discern the difference between storing up goods on earth and storing up treasures in heaven?

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{ 4 comments… read them below or add one }

Tim @ Faith and Finance March 11, 2011 at 8:53 am

Investing in the lives of others is a part of storing your treasures in heaven. When I use my resources to bless others, I’m showing Christ to them in a way they may not have experienced before – that’s what storing up treasures in heaven means to me.

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Sandy @ yesiamcheap March 14, 2011 at 1:50 pm

Once you realize that your treasures are not here, then accumulating more STUFF becomes irrelevant. That’s when you stop needing the new car or a big expensive house. I am trying to embrace what they are now calling a minimalist lifestyle.

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Squirrelers March 15, 2011 at 12:17 pm

I like the first 2 comments above, from Tim and Sandy. Well put.

Really, my addition to the conversation would be that our true needs in this existence (at least mine) are to have food, shelter, and safety. This “security” – along with taking care of my family- are what drive me financially.

Material things? Well, the ideas of accumulating them for the sake of having the best stuff isn’t for me. Now, I’m only human, and I do give in to temptations in this regard from time to time. But it’s being the best person I can be for those I love – and making a postive impact on people’s lives in general- that’s the “stuff” that matters most. Ultimately, the material things won’t go with me anywhere. Those aren’t the treasures to be taken anywhere, for me anyway.

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joeplemon March 15, 2011 at 2:17 pm

Tim, Sandy and Squirrelers,
Thanks to all three of you for your comments. It is obvious to me that you have your priorities straight: more and more material stuff is not going to make you one iota happier; the “good stuff” — stuff that will last — is loving God and loving our neighbors. The more we give away that “good stuff”, the more we build treasures in heaven and the happier we are here on earth.

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