Topic: We receive power to focus more on non-perishable heavenly things than on perishable earthly things.
Texts: 2 Cor. 4:18; Phil. 3:12.


If as Christians we pay attention to challenges, difficulties, afflictions, persecution etc, that confront us in life on the one hand, and on the glittering, attractive, but perishable material things of the world on the other hand, the tendency is high that we may lose focus and thereby compromise our spiritual uprightness, our Christian living standards; our love for God may wean off and become watered down. Imagine this being at the expense of non-perishable heavenly treasures that have been laid for us!

This informs the subtle warning or advice given in 1 John 2:15-17 against the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eye and pride of life, like Paul impressed it on his audience in 2 Cor. 4: 17 where he says: “For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, is working for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory.” The next verse 18 is worthy of note “…while we do not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen. For the things which are seen are temporary, but the things which are not seen are eternal.”

The material things we often allow to consume our passion are temporal and ephemeral, they are things we see today and may see no more tomorrow. We can imagine how regrettable it would be if all efforts, resources committed to these things ended in vanity. ‘Vanitas, vanitas, omnia Vanita.’ This is the Latin interpretation of the Preacher’s word in Ecclesiastes which means, “Vanity of vanities…all is vanity! Correlating with the question asked in Mark 8:36 – “For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? May we not lose our soul because of anything, particularly because of the ephemeral, perishable things of this world in the name of Jesus. Amen.

Dear all in Christ, this prayer/Lenten season has been an opportune time for us to have a rethink on the issue before us today, a golden opportunity to set our priorities right so that this regrettable phrase, ‘HAD I KNOWN’ will not come from our mouth. The incidence of the rich man and Lazarus, the poor, sour ridden beggar as recorded in Luke 16:19-31 should be a lesson for us.

As we have prayed this season and will continue to pray on this topic subsequently, God will endow us the will power and the grace not to put our eternal home and our heavenly treasures at jeopardy because of the mundane material things of this world in the name of Jesus. Amen and amen. God bless you. SHALOM.

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