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From The Chaplain's Desk
From The Chaplain's Desk: Lay Up Treasures in Heaven

By Charles Dimmick, CT State Grange Chaplain

  March 7, 2017 --

Lay Up Treasures in Heaven

Matthew 6:19-21

“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy 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 and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”

For too many of us, laying up treasures on earth has been a major distraction from our need to lay up treasures in heaven. In fact, for some of us, our mantra seems to be “He who dies with the most toys wins”. And yet, objectively, those who die with the most toys are just dead. They have won nothing.

In the third degree ritual of the Grange the Chaplain warns “Take heed, therefore, and beware of covetousness; for a man’s life consisteth not in the abundance of things he possesseth, but in the right use of God’s blessings.”

One of the major dangers of putting too much stock in earthly possessions is that they may come to possess you instead. Remember the ghost of Jacob Marley, in Dicken’s “Christmas Carol”. He was bound with a chain “made... of cash-boxes, keys, padlocks, ledgers, deeds, and heavy purses wrought in steel.” The ghost explains “I wear the chain I forged in life…”I made it link by link, and yard by yard; I girded it on of my own free will, and of my own free will I wore it.”

This is not to say that we should give away all that we have and own nothing, although such was the advice that Jesus gave the rich young man, to “sell all that you have and follow me”. Rather, it is a warning that we need to shift our values. We must recognize that all that we have is a gift from God, and we should in thankfulness for what we have received give freely of what we have.


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