What Treasures Are You Chasing?
By Jim Liebelt
Here’s a reminder (author unknown) to keep perspective on your pursuits in life…
The story has been told of a banker who was vacationing in a small coastal village. While walking near a pier he observed a small boat with just one fisherman. Inside the boat with the fisherman were several yellow-fin tuna. The businessman complimented the fisherman on the quality of his catch and asked how long it took to catch them. “Only a little while,” he replied.
The businessman then asked why he didn’t stay out longer and catch more fish. The fisherman said he had enough to support his family’s immediate needs. “But what do you do with the rest of your time?” the banker asked. The fisherman responded, “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a nap in the afternoon, and stroll into the village each evening with my wife where we relax and sing and I play guitar with our friends. I have a full and busy life.”
The businessman scoffed, “You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat and with the proceeds buy a fleet of boats. Instead of selling your fish to a middleman, you could sell directly to a processor. You could eventually open your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You could leave this small village and move to a big city where you could run your expanding enterprise.”
The fisherman asked, “But how long will this take?” The businessman replied, “15 to 20 years!” “But then what?” asked the puzzled fisherman. The banker laughed and said, “That’s the best part. You can sell your business and retire and move to a small coastal fishing village where you could sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take afternoon naps, stroll to the village in the evenings with your wife where you could relax, sing and play guitar with your friends. You would have a full and busy life.”
The fisherman smiled at the businessman, quietly gathered his catch and walked away.
What are you chasing after in life? How (and with whom) you spend the bulk of your time may reveal much about your priorities. Jesus said, “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” (Matthew 6:19-21, NIV)
What kind of treasures are you building? Are they temporary or will they last forever?
Make a list ordering your life’s priorities, then ask yourself the following questions: Are you satisfied with your priorities? Are your time and relationship investments in synch with your priorities? Are your priorities in synch with God’s values? What, if anything, needs to change in your life to get your priorities straightened out? Will you commit to change?
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