Matthew 6:19-34 How To Get What You Want

19 “Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moths and vermin destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moths and vermin do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

22 “The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are healthy,[c] your whole body will be full of light. 23 But if your eyes are unhealthy,[d] your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness!

24 “No one can serve two masters. Either you will hate the one and love the other, or you will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve both God and money.

25 “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? 26 Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27 Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life[e]?

28 “And why do you worry about clothes? See how the flowers of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. 29 Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 30 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you—you of little faith? 31 So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ 32 For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. 33 But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. 34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.

How To Get What You Want

There is a trick in getting what you want.  It is to align what you want with what God wants.  Some of us say we want what God wants, but we don’t surrender our wanting because we fear that God can not keep us safe, or won’t.  Sometimes we fear what will happen if we relinquish control.  Our worry somehow seems to have the affect of holding tomorrow’s consequences at bay.  It is shown when we utter the lunacy, “If I don’t worry about it, who will?”  God has it all in hand and he is not worrying about it.

What do you want?

Do you want money?  You don’t need it.  Right now, you need nothing.  That is not exactly true.  The LORD is your shepherd, so you lack nothing.  The LORD is your shepherd, you shall not want.  ‘Want’ is connected to ‘lack’.  We want something because we perceive a lack of something.  Disciples lack nothing.

What do you want?

Do you want respect and acceptance?  You are accepted by God.  You were created to desire to show him respect and worship.  There is joy in letting go of our desires to stroke our own ego.

What do you want?

Do you want to be safe?  Do not fear man who can destroy the body.  God will sustain your soul and give you a new body for eternity.

What do you want?  Rest?  amusement?  Sex?  Why do we pursue these things?  They are markers of a bigger lack in our lives.  Our longings for small things are just indicators that we are never going to be satisfied until we seek our satisfaction in him.

Once we pursue God, we can cast our anxieties on him.  We can see more clearly that he has it all covered.  Secondly, all the material and emotional needs we have will be met in the right time and in the right way.

Questions

  1. What things that people want does Jesus cover in Matthew 6:19-34?
  2. Why do people in Jesus’ crowd and in Antioch (recipients of Matthew) want such things?
  3. How does Jesus command disciples to align their thinking?
  4. What do you want?
  5. How should you be thinking about what you want?
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About Plymothian

I teach at Moody Bible Institute in Chicago. My interests include education, biblical studies, and spiritual formation. I have been married to Kelli since 1998 and we have two children, Daryl and Amelia. For recreation I like to run, play soccer, play board games, read and travel.
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