Friday, June 10, 2011
Today’s Topic: Lost Treasures
Today’s Text: Isaiah 44:9 All who make idols are nothing, and the things they treasure are worthless. Those who would speak up for them are blind; they are ignorant, to their own shame.
Last night was fun. Early yesterday morning I got a text message from a friend in the church inviting me to go along on a trip to a Minnesota Twins game. I accepted. It was a great night of relaxation and fellowship. I am very thankful to the men who took me, and I don’t want anything I say from this point on to detract from that thankfulness I have.
I had not been to the new Target Field in Minneapolis yet. It is a great baseball stadium. It was designed well for viewing a game. Even the seats way up high are perfect. I know, because that’s where we sat – right behind home plate in the upper deck.
The technology is incredible. The big high definition screen behind the left field seats that is used as a scoreboard and video screen is over 58,000 square feet. That’s more than two times larger than the total square footage of my house. They recently installed a new smaller screen in right field and next to it is a one hundred foot tall tower. It is a media tower and displays information on all four sides. The cost was 8 million dollars. The total cost for the Target Field now exceeds 500 million dollars so we can watch baseball games.
As I sat there enjoying the game, I was talking to one of the men in our group. We were discussing the incredible amount of money that was spent on the stadium, not to mention what is spent on the players and the coaches and the staff and the stadium upkeep and the light bill and the list goes on and on. Then there’s all the money spent by the fans to pay for all the money spent on the team. Fifteen dollars for a cheeseburger and fries and soda. If they wanted one, and many people did, it was $7.25 for a bottle of beer. You had to pay $5.00 for a bag of peanuts. And it was another five bucks for an ice cream sandwich.
I told my friend that as much as I was a part of the system by being at the game, it is a shame that so much money is so freely spent for personal recreation and pleasure when we are having trouble raising less than ½ of a percent of that amount so we can continue to grow the Kingdom of God in a new facility. Every week our general fund giving to pay the bills of God’s work in our church goes deeper in the red, yet it seems that our lifestyles have not taken a hit at all. Yet, as I told him, all that is being invested in the pleasures of the world will pass away, but only what is done for Christ will endure for all eternity. It seems we are worshiping the wrong things with our resources.
Now don’t get me wrong, I am not against baseball. I proudly wore my Detroit Tigers hat to the Twins game last night. I’m not against wealth and the enjoyment of the things God has blessed us with in this world. But I do question my own priorities of wealth management sometimes. Maybe we all should. Why do we feel so entitled to advance our own economic status when the work of Jesus Christ is suffering? It is suffering you know. Our Deacons at our church are having a very difficult time paying the bills let alone authorizing the ministry expenses that the Elders want for continued growth and ministry. Something is wrong when the Lord’s people are getting richer but the Lord’s work is getting poorer.
Isaiah speaks the word of the Lord to us all in Isaiah 44:9-20 when He talks about idols and the things we treasure. Jesus said it this way – “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:19-21)
So where is your heart?