We live in the day and age of YOLO, that is “you only live once”. People want to get the most out of life because, after all, they see this world as all there is. They see life only through a horizontal lens. Unfortunately, Christians can fall prey to this as well. They forget or neglect the vertical relationship in their lives, namely their relationship with the Lord. They live without an eternal perspective. The lack of perspective is evident in what they do and how they act. They invest all their time in things without eternal impact and when they wonder if their needs will be met, they over-concern themselves and worry. They have lost a biblical perspective of treasure and trust. Jesus hits on these two topics, treasure and trust, and shows us the right perspective is an eternal and biblical perspective: the vertical perspective. The vertical perspective calls for Christians to not pursue temporary treasures but to lay up “treasures in heaven” (6:20). Our treasure is intertwined with our heart and it will reveal where our worship truly lies (6:21, 24). Your heart must be probed to see if what you are building is temporary and fleeting or if your treasure is of eternal impact for the kingdom of God. At the same, we not only see the vertical dimension of our treasure but also our trust. We all have needs and nobody is self-sufficient. We all consider food, drink, and clothing to be important in our lives. Indeed, they are essential. So a natural response would be anxiety if one is wondering whether or not these needs will be met. Then again, it depends on your perspective. If you have merely a horizontal perspective, then you probably would find anxiety and worry to be perfectly fine responses. However, if you have a vertical, God-centered, perspective, you will not fret. You know God will provide because He is the God of provision. He takes care of His creation (6:28-30) and He will certainly take care of you (6:32). That is why you “seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness” (6:33). When you live with the vertical perspective of trust, your needs will be added and taken care of because you have trusted in your biggest need, God! In observing a life of true righteousness (5:20), we see it is a life that seeks first God’s righteousness. We do not look at life from only a horizontal point of view; we look at life primarily from a vertical point of view. When we do that, our treasure and trust are in their right place.
- What type of treasures are you laying up: temporary ones with no eternal impact or heavenly ones with eternal impact for the kingdom of God?
- How does a vertical perspective to trust God and seek Him help when you are faced with troubling circumstances and are tempted to worry?