Looking for the Worthwhile

"Do not inflict me with love for money! Turn my eyes from worthless things." Psalm 119:36, 37 NLT

His discovery on January 24, 1848, changed the lives of thousands. James W. Marshall was prospecting at Sutter's Mill in Coloma, California, when he discovered gold. News of his find pummeled across the country. Over the next seven years, 300,000 people made their way to California. Half came by sea, and the other half arrived from the East by land using the California and Gala River trails. Although a few became wealthy, most returned home with little more than they started with. Even more disappointing was finding what appeared to be gold only to have the assayer declare it pyrite-"fool's gold." It looked like gold but was worthless.

I've never panned for gold or bought gold certificates, but I have been tempted to love money and the things it can buy-many of which are worthless.

Money in and of itself is neutral. I can use it for good or bad. I can pay my bills or throw it away by gambling. I can buy food and carry it to a needy neighbor or buy the latest smart phone. I can save it for a rainy day or spend it as fast as I make it. I can invest all my extra money, hoping it will reward me with a nice retirement nest egg, or I can invest some and use the rest to care for my family and promote God's work across the world.

To his son in the faith, Timothy, Paul wrote, "Teach those who are rich in this world not to be proud and not to trust in their money, which is so unreliable." 1 Timothy 6:17. As so many discovered after the stock market crashed in 1929, what is here one moment can be gone the next.

I choose to store my treasures in heaven, which is what Jesus said I should do. There, they are safe from thieves and the destructive elements of nature. When loving and serving God through practical means is my focus, my rewards will be secure. Search for what's worthwhile instead of spending your time on pursuits that will only disappoint.

Prayer: Father, focus our pursuits on things that will build us up spiritually and enlarge Your kingdom on this earth.

Martin Wiles
Hodges, South Carolina, USA

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