“And whenever you fast, do not look dismal, like the hypocrites, for they disfigure their faces so as to show others that they are fasting. Truly I tell you, they have received their reward. But when you fast, put oil on your head and wash your face, so that your fasting may be seen not by others but by your Father who is in secret; and your Father who sees in secret will reward you.
“Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.
“The eye is the lamp of the body. So if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light; but if your eye is unhealthy, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!
“No one can serve two masters; for a slave will either hate the one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and wealth.”
Verses 16-18 are basically more of what I read last time. Don’t fast for the sake of showing off. Instead do it in secret so God will know and no one else. Only then can your heart be in the right place.
Verses 19-24 primarily concern wealth. Jesus gives two main reasons that we shouldn’t worry about money. First, money is only on earth and will not matter in eternity. Second, you cannot serve two masters; you can only serve money or God, not both. So Jesus tells us to focus on “treasures in Heaven” that will last forever.
It’s a simple enough concept, but hard to execute in real life. We need some amount of money to live, and then we have to save up for our kids’ college, retirement, buying a home, buying a car, and all manner of other things. It’s difficult to not let earning money become our whole life. It’s just not as important as other things. Which is one of the reasons I don’t think I could be happy at a job unless I believed my job was making the world a better place.
It’s a fine line, one that I have certainly been struggling with since money has been tight. I pray God will help me to do better.