The Bible speaks about treasures and how the condition of the human heart is influenced by what it yearns to have. Joshua Chapter 6 recorded that God caused the city of Jericho to fall into the hands of the Israelites. However, in chapter 7, Israel was defeated by Ai because of a sin committed by a man called Achan. When Joshua found the culprit who caused Israel’s downfall, Achan’s confession in Joshua 7:20 – 21b says, “And Achan answered Joshua, “Truly, I have sinned against the LORD God of Israel, and this is what I did: when I saw among the spoil a beautiful cloak from Shinar, and 200 shekels of silver, and a bar of gold weighing 50 shekels, then I coveted and took them.”
The process of how things are treasured in life starts off usually quite innocently. In this instance, Achan first saw the spoil which was beautiful. It caught his attention. Notice that he did not stop after looking. Achan coveted what he saw, in his heart. This probably meant that Achan yearned after the spoil after entertaining thoughts about how he could secretly enjoy them for himself, which was against God’s command. So Achan acted upon the desire of his heart. I am reminded that what I see can affect my heart in a deep way if I keep pondering about it. The second glance which I give my attention to that can cause my heart to stir in ungodly ways needs to be checked. I need to submit the things I see to God in prayer constantly and ask Him to continually guard my heart. I am reminded to check the condition of my heart in the light of God’s Word and to always align it with God’s Will. I can also be trapped with the unwanted “treasures” in my heart by what I focus on negatively.
Hosea 9:10b says, “But they (the Israelites) came to Baal-peor and consecrated themselves to the thing of shame, and became detestable like the thing they loved.” The Israelites became like the detestable thing they loved. What a frightening thought. By focusing on “wrong treasures” in my life and pondering about them more and more, they will eventually consume me. This leads to me take note about what I ponder and think about daily and to be more mindful about it. Should there be unwholesome thoughts that come to my mind daily, I need to take concrete steps to steer away from them with God’s help.
What my eyes see that causes my mind to think about constantly will cause my inner self to seek such things. These will become my treasure eventually. This is why the apostle Paul writes in Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honourable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.” A person who has found his or her treasure in Christ will be a contented person just as what Paul writes in the later part of verse 11, “…. I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content.”
The treasures of my heart will be displayed in the things I choose to do, how I live my life and the words I use. How am I developing my heart to seek the true treasure in Christ daily? My journey of true contentment found in Christ as my utmost treasure has still a long way to go. Will you join me in this journey?
By Joey Hong (YCKC Bulletin 14 July 2019)