One of the memorable lessons from my elementary school was recognizing the importance of seeing the bigger picture in life. We often give such advice to friends and family who feel lost or overwhelmed to understand life’s purpose. Often media dictates who we should be, how we should behave and what our aspirations should be. There in itself lies the problem. Media often suggests material goods as a way of making oneself feel good, to feel that we have achieved something in life with the accumulation of goods.
Rewind 3000 years ago and you may find a similar theme when pharaohs were buried with earthly treasures and often with their servants who were still alive at that time to keep them company after they passed on. Today’s children have a different challenge with social media suggesting a different type of treasure – the popularity factor of how many “likes” or “fans” a person has. To some, this has become the focus. To be popular is to gain self-confidence and a sense of achievement. One’s self-identity and their intimate relationship with God can be easily lost in the furore of fame and popularity. A person can become easily distracted chasing the next fad or idea that will further increase their popularity and at the same time, lose their sense of self and virtue. It is indeed hard for many of us to “let go” of our earthly possessions. Yet for those of us who have a roof and food on the table, we are better off than two thirds of the rest of the world or about 4 billion people. Recently at a fundraising talk, an idea put forth recommended that those who have more actually become indebted to those who have less because the world’s resources are meant to be shared amongst all peoples who call this world our home.
Once again, getting back to the bigger picture, letting go of our attachments to earthly treasures and maturing our hearts to heavenly treasures can help us become more truly aware of where our heart is in its longing for the eternal love of God. A home is more important than a house. It is the loving relationship between husband and wife and of the family built upon the love of God that makes a home. These are life’s treasures, memories built upon love of God and of each other. After all, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Luke 12:34)