An Evolution of Values (click for audio)
In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus offered an important bit of advice pertaining to this issue of values and how they tie in directly with our self-image.
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 (Matthew 6:19-21).
Treasures on earth are those things the senses-based identity believes will make it complete. These perceived treasures are not confined to material things. Ironically they can also include such things as your spiritual studies. In these studies you are seeking knowledge that you hope will fill an inner void and make you feel complete. Why do you hold this hope? The simple answer is that you feel a sense of incompleteness. Through your studies you accumulate inspiring ideas that change your thinking in a positive way because they provide inspiration that makes you feel better, at least momentarily. The experience of feeling better, however, should not be confused with the experience of knowing your completeness. Your treasure trove of positive ideas and catch phrases is not immune to being stolen by that master thief we all know as fear.
There is a major difference between pursuing things and ideas that protect you from fear and uncovering that part of you that genuinely knows no fear. When you place a high value on making this discovery, when it becomes the primary object of your study and quiet time, the completeness you seek will begin to show itself in ways that create a genuinely meaningful impact on your daily life.
Your deepest essence is your treasure in heaven. Coming to know and live from this deeper aspect of your being is an evolution of values that come from the heart.