A Christmas Temptation

19“Don’t collect for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But collect for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves don’t break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Matthew 6:19-21 (HCSB)

Jesus taught his disciples, and us, that we shouldn’t value the material possessions of this world. Instead, we should place value on heavenly treasures. The things we treasure will reveal what is truly in our hearts.

During the Christmas season a great temptation arises. The temptation is there always, but it really seems to rear its ugly head during this time of the year. That temptation is the want for material possessions. I worked in retail this year on Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving when most retail outlets open early and have sales in an attempt to attract holiday shoppers. Every year we hear news stories about shoppers camping out, sometimes 2-3 days, in order to be first in line. We even hear stories about crowds trampling one another, or even physically fighting each other, when trying to get their hands on that one item. Why? I think it’s because we have given in to the temptation to store up treasures on earth. Many people lose sight of the true meaning of Christmas…the celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ…and become greedy, materialistic monsters.

Please don’t misunderstand. I’m not saying buying gifts for one another is wrong. I just think that it is easy at Christmas time to forget what the season is all about and become one of those “I want” people. We all fall victim to the temptation to store up treasure on earth, especially when we are bombarded with so much commercialism during the holidays. My prayer this year, and going forward, is that I (and you) will remember what Jesus said. May we remember the true meaning of Christmas and focus on storing up treasure in heaven. “For where you treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Prayer: Lord Jesus, thank you for the teachings you left us in the Bible. Help me to meditate on Your teaching in Matthew 6. May I remember during Christmas, and all year, to focus on storing up treasure in heaven, not on earth. Help me to not give in to the temptation of wanting more and more stuff. Instead, help me remember that you will supply all my needs. Amen.

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