Several weeks ago, I drove to my local library and saw a beat-up old minivan in the parking lot. It was very beat-up; most of the frame had been rusted through at the bottom. Paint was peeling from the doors, and all the paint was completely gone from the hood, exposing the raw ugly metal beneath. The side-view mirror was bent, and the tires were well worn. I don’t usually pay any attention to cars, but this one caught my eye because it had a bumper sticker on the back bumper. It read:
Don’t let the car fool you. My treasure is in heaven.
It made me literally laugh out loud.
I’d been moping about my kitchen remodel this week (er, rather, my lack of one). But the more I thought about it, the more I remembered a certain psalm. It’s a psalm I remember often, actually, especially when I sometimes skim news headlines. It’s Psalm 73. I’ll quote excerpts.
2 But as for me, my feet had almost stumbled;
My steps had nearly slipped.
3 For I was envious of the boastful,
When I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
4 For there are no pangs in their death,
But their strength is firm.
5 They are not in trouble as other men,
Nor are they plagued like other men.
6 Therefore pride serves as their necklace;
Violence covers them like a garment.
7 Their eyes bulge[a] with abundance;
They have more than heart could wish.
11 And they say, “How does God know?
And is there knowledge in the Most High?”
12 Behold, these are the ungodly,
Who are always at ease;
They increase in riches.
13 Surely I have cleansed my heart in vain,
And washed my hands in innocence.
14 For all day long I have been plagued,
And chastened every morning.
15 If I had said, “I will speak thus,”
Behold, I would have been untrue to the generation of Your children.
16 When I thought how to understand this,
It was too painful for me—
17 Until I went into the sanctuary of God;
Then I understood their end.
18 Surely You set them in slippery places;
You cast them down to destruction.
19 Oh, how they are brought to desolation, as in a moment!
They are utterly consumed with terrors.
20 As a dream when one awakes,
So, Lord, when You awake,
You shall despise their image.
21 Thus my heart was grieved,
And I was vexed in my mind.
22 I was so foolish and ignorant;
I was like a beast before You.
23 Nevertheless I am continually with You;
You hold me by my right hand.
24 You will guide me with Your counsel,
And afterward receive me to glory.
25 Whom have I in heaven but You?
And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You.
26 My flesh and my heart fail;
But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
27 For indeed, those who are far from You shall perish;
You have destroyed all those who desert You for harlotry.
28 But it is good for me to draw near to God;
I have put my trust in the Lord GOD,
That I may declare all Your works.
It spoke to me not to be envious for new kitchen remodels or covet fancy real estate. I do what I can do, and belly-aching about my current plight is not going to help anything. I trust in God, and He’ll take care of things. I’m certainly not saying that new kitchen remodels are bad, or that people are evil who get them! But if my happiness hinges on the amount of stuff I can get, then I am very very poor indeed.
I really want to own a new kitchen and a renovated house. But I do not want those things to own me. I will continue working for and toward those goals, but just like that bumper sticker, “my treasure is in heaven.” LOL, I should get a sticker like that for my back door for all to read who enter!
Don’t let the house fool you. My treasure is in heaven.