According to the Bible, Christ claimed, “For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.” Sad to say, much of my life has been living in second, with spurts of third and fourth interwoven during the decade.
I became aware my own life story this afternoon. Theoretically, spirituality includes trying to better my relationship with God and better myself as a person each day. But I was confronted by my own inadequacy overhearing a conversation at the next table.
“What are your life’s priorities?” asked one women to another.
“Family, school, work, future, other,” her friend responded.
“And you husband?”
“Oh, he’s lumped in there between families and other.”
Like this woman’s husband, I’ve lived a life of second, third and fourth. My early years was blended education from family and friends that I was not first. Through systematic thought, someone else’s opinion of me became my life and I became swallowed by a life of inadequacy. Few, if any, placed me first.
Twenty years ago, I asked my employer if I could attend management training. I was never given the chance, as management never saw me as a trainable leader. My second wife’s priorities emphasized her mother first, family second, her image third and I was fourth.
This realization was an extremely tough to reconcile over coffee at a Panera Bread Company. Truth be told, I would never be number one. I could have climbed the Himalaya’s, cured cancer, created time travel or won the lottery, but her priorities would always remain mother, family, her image and me. I constantly fought, but I did not understand the psychological game was predestined. I would be not better than fourth.
I realize now that even my greatest love, Karen was doomed. Her priorities were, living for Christ, her image and me. I was never the priority. She loved me deeply, as I did her. We were soul mates. But at the end of the day, she would not relinquish her image and standing in the Catholic Church nor her image of Christ for a divorced man. Karen would always be married to Christ and never to me. At that level, I was only an accessory.
As a Buddhist, we should share championing one another. Marriage is unlike any other role we fill in life. Marriage is unlike any other job we do. Marriage is elevated, by love, speaking through love and should elevate one another to the highest place of life.
Loving like Christ means wanting to please God in every part of life: at the job, in all routine work, in daily relationship, and in the big and small decisions of life. We must live in love during our earthly, human life, and become empowered by Love’s Spirit.
What we need to consider is how to obey the living Christ and Living Buddha by serving and making one another your primary ministry. Thus you, and those you love, are the priority.
So I have to ask …. Thy Treasure Is?