“Where Your Treasure Is…” (Luke 12:33-34)
What is the difference between a renter and a buyer? Most landlords will tell you their renters are not as interested in taking pristine care of a home they do not own. They need to take care of it well enough to functionally live in it, but it would be foolish of them to invest in it when there is no long-term reward for their investment. So, they will rarely spend money on paint, flooring, new cabinets, plumbing, roofing, landscaping, or anything else. Why not? They are not invested in the house. The landlord is invested, but the house is a short-term necessity for the renter. Their heart is just not invested in the house.
Conversely, a home buyer is typically interested in investing in their home. The home buyer may one day need to sell their home. In order to net a larger profit, the home must be properly updated. So, they will look to add curb appeal with landscaping. They will make sure the roof has no leaks so no further damage can ensue. They will make sure all systems are functional. They will strive to update the interior walls, flooring, cabinets, and fixtures to give the home a fresh look so it will pay off long-term. They spend to gain.
Renters and buyers have two different approaches because they are making two different types of investments—short-term and long-term. In the spiritual realm, we are both renters and buyers. As mortals, we realize this world is only temporary. We must have some functional care for this world and our life in it, but our realization of our short-term pilgrimage here tempers our over-emphasis upon material belongings. We are just renters on earth. However, we should invest in something more long-term. Jesus promises an eternal, heavenly home for the faithful after death. So, our focus is on eternity. As 2 Corinthians 5:10 says, “For we know that if our earthly house, this tent, is destroyed, we have a building from God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens” (NKJV). Because this is our lasting treasure, it guides the heart’s decisions.
Essentially, this logic is why Jesus says what He does in Luke 12:33-34. He tells His disciples to willingly give of their earthly belongings to those in need on earth. Do not be tethered to earth-stuff. We are just renters. Our focus is on a far greater possession.
“Sell your possessions, and give to the needy. Provide yourselves with moneybags that do not grow old, with a treasure in the heavens that does not fail, where no thief approaches and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Luke 12:33-34, ESV).
Where is your heart? Is it focused on hoarding those material things mentioned by Jesus? Is the acquiring of earthly treasures your focus? Are you over-invested in a temporal portfolio? What foolish renter would spend all of their time, and money on a house he is just going to leave behind? Jesus wants your heart in the right place. He wants you to value the nobler things, eternal treasures, because where your treasure is…