What it’s worth

These are my kids.

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I’m hoping you’ll be so very overcome by how cute they that you’ll completely overlook our less than stellar landscaping.

I’d like to draw your attention to the AT AT walker in our backyard (pretend your 4, and you’ll see it…maybe…)  In case you are not a Star Wars Geek, married to a Star Wars Geek, or the parent of a Star Wars Geek, here are what actual AT AT Walkers look like:

 

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The imagination of a child is an impressive force, oh so delightful when kids are at play; but down-right ridiculous and formidable when a fight breaks out.  My children have been known to fight over who gets to decorate THE IMAGINARY COOKIES they baked.  Try and tell them they can just bake more, because THEY ARE IMAGINARY and they look at you as if  you’re the one whose gone round the bend.

So when the two of them broke out in a fight over who gets to drive this AT AT Walker in the back yard, I had the NERVE to suggest that they simply build a second one.  It was communicated to me at that point, not so much in words but in glares, that my rational ideas were not welcome, and the fight continued.

As you can see from the picture, this was not some fancy-schmancy new toy , it was a Fisher Price basketball hoop, minus the backboard, and a cracked plastic chair.  That’s it!  However, Just like the imaginary cookies they fought over, it wasn’t really about what the object was.    Believe it or not, it wasn’t even about whether or not it was something real or pretend.

It was entirely about the power they had assigned to this object.   

As I stood at my kitchen sink, watching them through the window as they fought (and rolling my eyes at their inability to solve this problem rationally), I was so strongly convicted.

How many times have I been stressed-out, discouraged, fearful, anxiety-ridden, or brokenhearted simply because I had given power and significance to something – imaginary or real – that did not warrant such authority?  How many times have I been the one irrationally outraged that I didn’t get to decorate the imaginary cookie?  How many times. Lord? 

Jesus summarizes this nicely for us,

For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

When I, for whatever reason, decide that something has value, my heart sure does follow.  I see this penetrating at every level of my life and being.

In some superficial ways…

        My weight.

         My outfit.

         A Pinterest-perfect themed birthday party for the kids.

And some deeper ways…

        The number of people who show up to a bible study I lead

         The number on the bank statement.

…and deeper still..

Who needs me.

   Who loves me.

Ideologies.

Theologies.

Identity.

How I look, or what I wear, or what the scale says are really just some cheap plastic chairs and a child’s basketball hoop.  Unless I say otherwise.

And I have.

The numbers, the decorations, and even, ahem, the backyard landscaping are just that – numbers, decorations and landscaping  Unless I say otherwise. 

And I have. 

We are not given a life free of problems, sickness, death, unemployment or relational conflict.  But it’s entirely possible that a lot of the problems I have are ones that I have created for myself.

What others think of me hold power because I have given that power over. Where my treasure is, there my heart goes, too.  And sometimes my treasures look a little too much like pictures on the internet, or pictures in my mind, or arguments won or praise received or being everyone’s favorite or health and wealth or even my own well being…and not enough like Jesus and His Kingdom.

And the result of course is plain as day.  I see it in my kids.  Temper tantrums over imaginary cookies.  Stressed-out, discouraged, fearful, anxiety-ridden, and brokenhearted.  Simply because I proclaimed that   _______________________ was the most important and valuable thing.

 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom.  Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys.

For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

This treasure, that the Father gives, is trustworthy, and worth everything.   As my heart follows, it finds those very things that it longs for most, things that make a downright MOCKERY of all that anxiety and fear and sadness and stress.

Today I’d like to remember to seek the best Treasure and let that treasure change my heart with the power to delight me, fulfill me, encourage me, empower me and save me. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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