A Sound Investment Advice

Matthew 6: 19-23
2 Cor 11:18, 21-30 / Ps 34

For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
(Matthew 6: 21)

We are blind to the real treasure
If the wealth of this world is our goal;
We will find the cost beyond measure
If it should mean the loss of our soul.

Jesus said, “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. For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also. The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is sound, your whole body will be full of light; but if your eye is not sound, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!” (Matthew 6: 19-23)

Reflection

In today’s Gospel, our Lord Jesus gives us two timely pieces of advice that are so relevant in today’s materialistic generation. The first concerns our primary pursuit in life: are we aspiring to pile up wealth in this life, or do we plan to invest it in heaven? The second concerns the state of our spiritual health, the ‘eye of our soul’ – our conscience. Both of these concerns will determine our life’s ultimate goal. What is most valuable in our life?

Jesus is stating the obvious in His first advice. Why hoard riches or material possessions in this life which can last no longer than rust or termites can destroy them, or thieves and robbers can take away? Unfortunately, most people who are wealthy or successful in this world become short-sighted, or their fortunes blur their vision. They become so self-assured and independent that they wander away from God’s light, and spend their time enjoying the flickering lights of the night’s vices. Darkness envelops their whole being, and the lamp of their faith grows dim.

We have heard many life testimonies shared about how the sudden change of fortune had been a curse in disguise. One’s eyes are easily blinded by the glitter of wealth. That is why we need to keep our vision clear on where we want to spend the rest of eternity after our brief sojourn here on earth. Our spiritual “eye” is our conscience. A Christian with a sound conscience lives in the light of God’s love. He believes that it is in acts of charity that he can store up or gain graces, which are the real treasure from God. And nothing can take that away from him. But a person who spends his life storing up material fortunes for himself is in darkness, because money gained for its own sake is usually earned by means foul and false. And spent in the same darkness of vices. Such earthly treasures last only for a time, and will never bring happiness, but only the deepest darkness to the soul.

In the earlier sections of Matthew’s Gospel, Jesus showed us how we can keep this lamp of our body sound: by disciplining our passions, such as anger and lust; making peace with our enemies; being charitable to the poor; and above all, keeping regular communication with God, our Father through prayer. With His guidance, we will be more prudent in the stewardship of our financial resources, enjoying a stable life here on earth, and at the same time investing wisely on the real treasure, which is heaven.

We praise and thank You, Father in heaven, for the wisdom of managing well the resources You have entrusted to us, making us see that when others are also benefited by them, then we have invested wisely, laying up treasures for ourselves in Your kingdom. Amen.

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