One night in December of 1914, a fire in West Orange, New Jersey, claimed Thomas Edison’s manufacturing facilities and with it, almost $1 million worth of equipment and the record of much of his work.
The next morning as he walked about the charred embers of much of his life’s work, Edison said, “There is value in disaster. All our mistakes are burned up. Now we can start anew.”
When material possessions are lost – be it a family heirloom, a retirement account, or a home – we have a choice in how we will respond. We can either throw up our hands in despair, or we can remember where our real security lies and look for a way forward.
How we react to losing worldly possessions says everything about our priorities. If we truly set our hearts on things above, not below, then however devastating our loss is, we can rejoice in knowing we have treasures in heaven that can never be destroyed.
So when you see the things of the world passing away, let it remind you of the coming world where nothing will pass away. Set your heart on heaven – not your earthly possessions – and you’ll be able to rejoice even amidst worldly loss.
Pray and ask God to help you maintain a focus on heavenly things, not earthly things.
Questions for Thought
Think of your most valued earthly possession. How would you feel if it were lost?
How might looking at every worldly object as something that’s passing away help give you perspective in a time of material loss?