Last year, Americans spent over $32 billion on health club memberships. Worldwide, the total reached $80 billion. According to the U.S. Census Bureau, $71 billion was spent on lottery tickets in 2017. Residents of Massachusetts topped the charts for ticket purchasing with the average person spending over $700.
Why are we pouring money into these things? What are we hoping to get?
Security. An hour at the gym will secure my health. Just one more ticket, and I’ll be set for life!
The prophet, Isaiah, warned the nation of Israel about the dangers of such beliefs, “You boast, ‘We have struck a bargain to cheat death and have made a deal to dodge the grave. The coming destruction can never touch us, for we have built a strong refuge made of lies and deception.’” (Isaiah 28:15)
Israel had placed its trust in the wealth and military might it had amassed. The nation’s leaders had traded the holy covenant with God for an unholy reliance upon themselves. They falsely believed that the strength and security they had created would keep them safe against the attacks of their enemies. Are we any different?
Over 700 years later, Jesus, who Isaiah called the foundation of our faith, again warned the nation of Israel and all who follow Him today, against searching for security in temporary things, “Don’t store up treasures here on earth, where moths eat them and rust destroys them, and where thieves break in and steal. Store your treasures in heaven, where moths and rust cannot destroy, and thieves do not break in and steal. Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be.” (Matthew 6: 19-21)
Today, let’s not follow in the footsteps of Israel’s failures, instead let’s remember the true source of our security, Jesus!