Nothing lasts forever.
Have you ever bought something and refused to throw it away until it had turned to rags or faded until you could barely tell what it was?
When I was eight years old, my grandparents bought me the most incredible jeans from Limited Too. They had pink roses and green leaves printed on the leg, with glitter all over, and they were the most comfortable pair of pants I’d ever worn. I didn’t take them off for years and refused to let my mom throw them out until the holes were so big that they no longer looked like jeans.
The first day we buy or are gifted with a new gadget or item, we treasure it and handle it with care. Like a newborn baby, we cradle our new possession and are so content that nothing can take it away. But, when the day comes where the paint starts to wear off, you drop it for the first time, or scratch the glass, how do you react?
Tonight, after cleaning the dishes, I was walking out of the kitchen when my new Apple Watch hit the edge of the counter. I heard the screech and froze in fear that I had broken it. My world seemed to crash as I thought about the possibility of breaking a gift that I had only had for a couple of weeks. I had been so sure it was unbreakable, that the thought of it getting scratched or ruined had never crossed my mind. Then, my dad reminded me of something important; he said, “Everything is temporary and can be replaced.”
We spend so much money on gadgets and gifts that we never stop to realize how fragile they are. I am devastated that my gorgeous, perfect, watch is now tainted; however, the more I think about the scratch, the more my dad’s words echo in my head.
“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.”
The Bible tells us multiple times that everything on this earth is temporary. During Yeshua’s ministry, a rich man came to him, asking what he needed to do to receive eternal life. Yeshua replied, “Why do you ask me about what is good? There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, obey the commands.” The man responded by telling Yeshua that he had kept the commands, so Yeshua answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”
The man left Yeshua and returned home upset because he was very wealthy and didn’t want to part with his fortune. Turning to His disciples after the exchange, Yeshua said, “I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God.” (Matthew 19:16-24)
We can be so careful and take care of our possessions, yet they will still break or wear out. Like everything else, our time on this earth is not eternal; however, our lives all have a purpose, and the few decades we dwell on this planet are special.
Every minute of every day is a gift from God, as we don’t know when our last second will be. A close family friend passed away recently, and at his memorial, I felt the Lord say to me, “Ariel used his time wisely. He spent his life serving others and used every minute he had to follow Me and share My love with others.”
It’s okay to want nice things, but when we begin to center our lives on chasing the dream of having the big house or a million dollars, we step out of the will of the Father. Ariel Cook and his wife Cindy spent eight years in Israel searching for a home. They moved over seventy times, and it wasn’t until Ariel died that he finally found his resting place in the Land. Through those years of wandering, Ariel dedicated his life to the community and refused to rest while there were still widows who needed his help or dogs that needed his love. He touched many people’s hearts and taught us the meaning of life – To serve others and share the love of God with everyone we meet!
“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
(2 Corinthians 4:16-18)
In 1 Kings 3, we see how pleased the Father is when Solomon asks for wisdom and knowledge rather than a long life or wealth: “The Lord was pleased that Solomon had asked for this. So God said to him, ‘Since you have asked for this and not for long life or wealth for yourself, nor asked for the death of your enemies but for discernment in administering justice, I will do what you have asked. I will give you a wise and discerning heart, so that there will never have been anyone like you, nor will there ever be.’” (1 Kings 3:10-12)
When we die, we cannot take anything with us. Everything we have worked to purchase on this earth will remain here; but, the seeds we plant and the impact we have on people’s lives will not be forgotten. At the end of Ariel’s memorial, everyone was given a small plant to take and give to someone in need. The label on each pot read, “Make time today to give love away.” Ariel’s memory will live on in the hearts of those he inspired, and each time someone looks at their gifted plants, they will see the splendor of their God!
Sail on to the Lord, Captain Cook! 💙
“For as the soil makes the sprout come up and the garden causes seeds to grow, so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness and praise spring up before all nations.”