Monday, May 09, 2005

The Treasure Principle by Randy Alcorn

When I was a young businessman, just starting out, I was driven to succeed. I wanted the big house with the pillars in front and the bowling alley in the basement. I wanted a Jaguar, the trips to foreign lands, and the home entertainment center worth $10,000 or more. The way to get there was to work hard and smart. I read the books that told you how to get there, and I did all the things they said to do. The good news - I gained a measure of that kind of success.

Then I found myself back in church after a 15 year interruption. Those things I had not yet notched on my gun didn’t seem as important. Preachers kept asking the question: On your death bed, what will seem important in retrospect. The awards, titles, and bank account, or the relationships, good deeds, and righteous behavior.

But there was tricky part for me. How does motivation (a built in part of our human condition) work when we are concentrating on the Christian life. Randy Alcorn suggests that there is no change in human nature or even in the requirement to become motivated, just in the goals. The Bible shows us over and over again how we are going to benefit if we seek the very real and concrete treasures that await us in heaven. God shows us that based on our actions on earth we will either gain or “suffer loss” in heaven.

Of course, God’s use of our motivational nature to get us working hard for heavenly rewards also results in earthly benefits. When we seek the right ends on earth, the blessings flow. They may be financial or they may take on lots of other forms, but they flow nevertheless, and that is our promise from God.

In his usual very readable form, Randy Alcorn explains all the ways we gain or lose based on our decisions. Check out the Treasure Principle for a really good read.

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