“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!
New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989, by the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved. USCCB approved.
Jesus tells us not to store up treasures on earth, but instead to store up treasures in heaven. Wealth does not satisfy. Money is only a means to other ends, many of which give only the illusion of happiness: status, security, or material pleasures. St. Ignatius of Loyola advocated that we be indifferent to all created goods, not only because they can take our attention away from God, but also because they do not truly satisfy our deepest longings.
What are the “treasures of heaven”? Jesus does not give us a list, but we know that they are goods that endure because God preserves them forever. St. Paul says that love “endures all things” (1 Cor 13:7). Our wealth, health, youthful good looks, status, and power will all fade away, but the love and relationships we create together will never leave us, because God will always preserve that love.
—Marina McCoy is an associate professor of philosophy at Boston College.
Take, Lord, and receive all my liberty,
my memory, my understanding,
and my entire will,
All I have and call my own.
You have given all to me.
To you, Lord, I return it.
Everything is yours; do with it what you will.
Give me only your love and your grace,
that is enough for me.
—St. Ignatius of Loyola