Talking about Heavenly Treasures
The Sermon on the Mount, found in the book of Matthew, contains Jesus’ teachings about his kingdom—and what members of his kingdom look like. One of Jesus’ topics was treasure—what do we value. He said, “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.” (Matt 6: 20-21)
How do we “wow” our kids with heavenly treasures when they are surrounded by visual pictures of earthly treasures? It’s not easy to compete with advertising, video games, television shows…..and yet, eternity is at stake. Here are some ideas to help convey the amazing treasures God has in store for us.
With younger children, plan a treasure hunt. Afterwards, talk about how much fun you had planning the hunt and then relate how God too has treasures that he is planning to give to us when we reach heaven. 1 Peter 5 talks about Jesus giving “crowns that will never fade away” to his leaders. Make crowns as a reminder that we will find amazing treasure in heaven.
With older children, use TV shows and commercials to ask the question—what do these characters treasure? What must you have or do or buy in order to be successful? Talk about treasures that are objects and treasures that are intangible such as success or popularity. What are people willing to do in order to find and keep their treasure? Talk about how fleeting the feelings associated with earthly treasures are –how long after getting a new iPod, does it seem old?
Adults also struggle with the abstractness of heavenly treasures. If you aren’t excited about what lays ahead for us, read Randy Alcorn’s book Heaven. He uses Scripture to paint a vibrant picture of eternity.
Talking about earthly and heavenly treasures with our children gives them and us something to hold on to during difficult times, keeps our focus on Jesus and eternity, and as a side benefit, helps us be wiser consumers in our earthly world!