Heaven Bound Journey

stack of assorted-color suit case lot
 
“Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.” Matthew 6:19-20
 
I don’t like to check my bags at the airport. It’s not so much the money, though some airlines sure charge a lot. It’s the control. Where’s my bag and the things I really need for this trip? When I stuff the bag into the overhead bin, I know where it is. Baggage claim, waiting at the carousel, seeing everyone else get their bag and walk away?  All that makes me nervous.
 
Jesus’ advice in our text today sounds familiar to our worries about baggage. He says that some things can be stolen away, so carefully prepare for our heaven-bound journey.  In fact, that journey calls us to do three distinct things.
           
First, leave somethings behind. You can’t take everything on the plane even here. We certainly can’t take everything with us to heaven. Some things need to be left off already, such as our attempts to pay our way into heaven, or our resentment over what’s happened in the past. There is no overhead bin for anger, resentment, and bitterness in the heaven-bound flight.
 
Second, take with you only what you need. You put into your one carry-on piece the essentials. So with our heaven-bound journey, the one essential is faith in the promises that God has made. Trust in Jesus’ death and resurrection fits and allows us to pass through the narrow gate leading to eternal life.
 
Third, send ahead the things that we need for an eternal stay.  That sounds like it could be a lot of stuff!  But the essential treasures that we store up in heaven might simply be the promise of a resurrected body and God’s promise that we will be included with all the saints.  Psalm 23 promises that God will prepare a table before us and we can leave to Him the details of that lasting banquet

Our Heavenly Father, thank you that you have paid for our heaven-bound journey through your Son. And help us to pack well for the journey. Help us to let go of those things which have no place on the trip and to hold tightly to faith alone in you. Welcome us then into the lasting home you’ve prepared.  In Jesus name, we pray, Amen.

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