I’ve asked myself this question many times, what would be the first thing I would grab if my house was on fire (other than the dogs, of course). I’ve always said my wedding photos. They can’t be replaced. That’s really something to think about. They are close to the front door and the family knows, get the photos!
Yesterday I was walking to the car and the thought, OH! I need to drop off my Hallmark order at Debbie’s Hallmark in Germantown. Since Jay and I were first married, I have collected Hallmark ornaments just like my sisters. There are series of ornaments, ornaments for babies, teachers, sports, I’m sure you have seen them all. There are three different series that I collect. When Trey was first born, my sister, Judy, started Trey with the very first miniature train engine. This year will be #18 in the series. Trey always got his trains out and would line them up on a shelf. He made sure they were in series number order. They were HIS trains. Maybe this year I will be able to get them out.
More for Collin than for Jay, I started the miniature fire engines. This year will be #11. Collin also gets them out and puts them on a side table. What Collin REALLY likes is my Wizard of Oz collection. I have them of every sort and kind. You can walk through the house and hear the witch cackling and know Collin has pushed the button. Not sure where they will go this year or if I will even get them out.
All of this RUSHED through my head, literally, within ten steps of walking to the car. Just a flashback of memories. Then, God spoke to me, as plain as day:
“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 neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in or steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Matt. 6:19-21
I don’t think God was saying, Lisa, don’t go get the ornaments. I think God was reminding me of what do I treasure most. And I thought about my sister, Donna, who is moving and having to choose what she is keeping, selling, and throwing away. And then my mind went to my husband who is a firefighter/paramedic. He goes to so many houses where people live that are hoarders. (Have you ever seen that show? OH MY!) They tell them if they have to respond to a fire, they may not be able to get to them because of the STUFF that is in the entry or blocking whatever room they are in. It’s because of STUFF. Lots of STUFF.
Sunday was July 7. It was the day we buried Trey last year. In Trey’s casket was a stuffed animal from Collin that he wanted to go with Trey. His class ring was on his finger. To be honest with you, I can’t remember if there was a polo hat in there or not. He WAS wearing a polo shirt and pants! Jay took his class ring off before he closed the casket himself. On Sunday, for the first occasion, I wore Trey’s class ring. Collin asked if he could wear it. I said sure, but treat it with respect, do not let anyone wear it, and do not take it off. During the service, it was passed down the row to me. I’m proud that Collin decided just give it back to mom. That ring is just STUFF. It means something to us, but it would not have gone to heaven with Trey. I doubt Jesus would have asked to see it.
This morning, I came into work and I read Jesus Calling. Did you read it? I’ll reprint it for you here. I don’t think Sarah would mind. I don’t think this was a coincidence.
WORSHIP ME ONLY. Idolatry has always been the downfall of My people. I make no secrets about being a jealous God. Current idols are more subtle than ancient ones, because today’s false gods are often outside the field of religion. People, possessions, status, and self-aggrandizement are some of the most popular deities today. Beware of bowing down before these things. False gods never satisfy; instead they stir up lust for more and more.
When you seek Me instead of the world’s idols, you experience My Joy and Peace. These intangibles slake the thirst of your soul, providing deep satisfaction. The glitter of the world is tinny and temporal. The Light O My Presence is brilliant and everlasting. Walk in the Light with Me. Thus you become a beacon through whom others are drawn to Me.
Exodus 20:4-5 – “You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth; you shall not bow down to them nor serve them. For I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children to the third and fourth generations of those who hate Me.”
Samuel 22:29 – “For You are my lamp, O Lord; The Lord shall enlighten my darkness.”
I just went WOW. Did you get that? “…today’s false gods are often outside the field of religion.” How much of my house is STUFF? There is so much of Trey’s STUFF I haven’t even looked through because of my own selfishness of not wanting to let go of his image – TREY’S image. That time will come. But how many of us have TVs, boats, jobs, sports that we put before the image of God? Do we hoard God? I want to be a hoarder of God so that when someone walks in my house, there is NOTHING they step over or through except the presence of the Holy Spirit. Maybe then, my husband will change from calling me a neat freak and I’ll be called a Jesus Freak.
Hummmm…they always said you would want a second tattoo. Calm down people. It’s just a joke.
Hoard your God, not your Stuff! But don’t judge – Trey’s stuff and image will be around for ME for a while. Like Bernadette in the Bahamas said, you just have to be a mother!