How Do I Determine My Needs?

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust destroys, and where thieves break in and steal. But lay 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 will your heart be also.” Matthew 6:19-21, Jesus’ words

Recently I was rearranging a drawer. In it was an old certificate that was faded and cracked—ready to become worthless tatters. Almost 60 years ago it was very important—worth saving. Now it is the height of unimportance. About 60 years ago it said something about me that I thought was important. Now it is laughable! Time changes everything—especially that which we view as an important need.

In pursing what we call life, we confuse want with need. Have you noticed how often we refer to a want as a need? I laughingly told someone recently that it took me 25 years to acquire my hunting gear (oh, how deliberately I assembled each piece I needed). It took maybe a month to dispose of it (suddenly I did not need any of it).

I wonder how much all of us acquire in life only to discover “I did not need that.” Joyce often says there will not be a dumpster big enough to hold all that our children will throw away when we die. We can, even now, hear them say, “Why did Mom and Dad keep THAT?” When we die, we all will leave many things that none of us would like to be used to define who we were or what was important in our lives.

There is an eternity. This physical life is NOT all there is. With Jesus, when we are presented to God, who we were will be far more important than what we owned. The issue in physical life (to God) will not be what we managed to acquire, but who in Jesus we were. The issue will be how we lived because we understood Jesus’ values (which are God’s values). It will involve the importance we placed on the eternal.

Wonder how our priorities in physical life would change, how our purchases would be altered, and how our collections would change if we lived life again after we met God? You do not have to meet God to change—time will show us how silly we are! As we get older, the things that were so important in younger days become unimportant. Refuse to let the unimportant rule your existence! Live for the eternal!

David Chadwell

West-Ark Church of Christ, Fort Smith, AR
Bulletin Article, 13 December, 2009


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