Follow My Heart

To treasure is to love or value greatly. If you want to find my treasure, follow my heart. It’s tempting to store up earthly treasure, but Jesus warns that earthly treasures are physical in nature and do not last. He suggests a different treasure that involves a change of heart.

“Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal.  Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.”

“Your eye is a lamp that provides light for your body. When your eye is good, your whole body is filled with light. But when your eye is bad, your whole body is filled with darkness. And if the light you think you have is actually darkness, how deep that darkness is!”

“No one can serve two masters. For you will hate one and love the other; you will be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.” (Matthew 6:19-24)

In The Message, Eugene Peterson translates verses 22-23 this way:

“Your eyes are windows into your body. If you open your eyes wide in wonder and belief, your body fills up with light. If you live squinty-eyed in greed and distrust, your body is a dank cellar. If you pull the blinds on your windows, what a dark life you will have!

I can relate to the terrible image in verse 23 because I pulled the blinds and stayed hidden in the dark for too long. God is opening my eyes wide in wonder and taking the blinds off my heart so I can see the true treasure of His Son’s precious love.

Dark cellars are safe places for hearts and treasures. I learned to hide my heart at a very early age and kept it hidden for most of my life. Jesus knows love only grows in openness, and I’m learning the same.

If you had followed my heart during most of my life, you would find a safe, dark cellar. If you follow it now, you’ll find an open window.

Photo Credit:  twomaisons
Photo Credit: twomaisons

The Measure of My Treasure

When it comes to love, time is the measure of my treasure. There is nothing sweeter than time with those I love, and nothing more heartbreaking than not having time together. Time is relative and in limited supply, so I turn to gifts to fill the empty space. Those presents are wonderful and easy, but they do not replace a sweet moment of sincere and heartfelt love.

Being present in an honest and loving way is how Christ loves. The Holy Spirit waits patiently for me to take note of His love. God longs for me to embrace His love now and understand that He will always love me. I’ve been in relationships with rooms filled with flowers and chocolates, but my heart was empty. God needs only time and space when it comes to love, and I plan to give Him both during this season of Lent. Isaiah 58 taught me just that last night. What I most need to give up during Lent is space in my heart for God’s love.

Valentine’s Day has always left me feeling alone and unloved. I mostly stayed indoors to avoid all the hype and showy displays. I’ve had more than my share of pity parties on Valentine’s Day and usually cried myself to sleep. I plan to spend this evening in the arms of two adorable little girls who love me very much while mommy and daddy have some time together. I love that I can give the gift of time on a day like today:)

God’s measure of love has to do with treasure and time.  Matthew 6:21 says it simply, “for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Those words cut straight to the heart of love.

My heart is where my treasure is, and the best way to measure my treasure is to see how my time is spent. Last night, I realized that too much of my time is wasted on what if’s and why not’s and not enough goes into what is:) I miss the love God has in my path when I pine away for what I don’t have. The most beautiful expression of love is time together. It lets me know I’m cherished, and that is how love should feel.

The biggest blessing of my new living arrangement is having lots of quality time with those I love, and that’s what love is all about. I’m learning to embrace the love God puts in my path and thank Him for each moment. When there is no time, there is no treasure. When there is no treasure, there is no love. Simple, but difficult words to hear when it comes to love. I’ve come to know what love is and isn’t, and the lessons in love and the lessons in praying are exactly the same-Take time!! When I take time to pray, I am taking time to love God. When I take time with those I love, it’s clear to see where my heart and treasure are.

The Treasure in My Chest:)

Matthew 6:19-21 says,

“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal.  But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal;  for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” NASB

My heart is a treasure chest. What I put in it is entirely up to me. It’s been taken, shaken, broken, and stolen as I’ve allowed other than His love to occupy the space. When I fill my heart with God’s Spirit, Christ’s love allows me to hear Him and clean out the clutter. The message is clear that God is near and love comes from above. Life is about loving, and love is the greatest treasure in this world and the next.

No one can steal Christ’s love, and it never rusts or rots. The measure of His sweet treasure is that it grows as it’s shared. Caring and connecting is not about taking and raping, trying and lying, or using and abusing. It is allowing the Spirit to show me the love in all God creates. Love comes from above, and it is stored in heaven. Jesus gives access to God through His Holy Spirit when I’m ready to accept His love and let it flow through my heart.

Once I know God’s love, the desire to store or stack up cheap imitations is gone. I’m learning to leave my treasure chest open as God’s love cannot be taken or stolen away. My heart’s been like a storage locker filled with junk left to the rust and dust that comes when I let Satan convince me that doing, fixing, enabling, and pleasing are what love is all about. That is true when it comes to the treasures of this world, but God’s kingdom is about a different kind of love and storage that creates a beautiful open space that invites His Spirit to flow through and fill at the same time:)