“Seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.” - Matthew 6:33 NASB
For centuries, the legend of Timbuktu captured the imagination of people throughout Europe. The legend was sparked in 1324 when the ruler of this African city made a “spectacular arrival in Cairo.” According to author Frank Kryza, this ruler had a caravan of 60,000 men and a baggage train of eighty camels, each carrying three hundred pounds of gold.
The outside world was astonished! They knew Timbuktu was located somewhere in northern Africa but no one knew exactly where, or how it accumulated this wealth.
Over time, the legend grew. In 1546, a Spanish Moor who had visited Timbuktu dazzled outsiders with descriptions of its coins of gold and the countless “doctors, judges, priests, and other learned men” who lived there. Later, a trader told of a caravan from Timbuktu arriving in Marrakesh loaded with gold that today would be valued at $5.2 billion!
Various adventurers failed in their quests to find this city. Many died, falling victim to heat, hunger, disease, or thieves. Finally, on this day in 1826, Alexander Laing walked into Timbuktu, the first modern European to set foot in this “last truly remote population center on earth.”
What Laing found shocked him. Instead of opulence, there was just a “poor collection of mud shanties with no wealth.” The trade that had brought wealth had “practically disappeared.”
Today, people still seek riches and fame, pleasure and power, believing that these things will last, and bring them,lasting satisfaction. But, like those who pursued Timbuktu, ultimately all earthly treasures disappear and disappoint.
But God promises lasting blessings for His people. The key is to seek first His Kingdom and His righteousness. Being good stewards of the resources He gives us. And sowing the “seed” He gives into good “soil.”
Commit your life to God. Serve Him with your whole heart. Trust Him to bless and provide for you.
PrayerFather, I dedicate my time, talent, and treasure to You. I seek Your Kingdom. Give me a burden for Souls. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Extended ReadingMatthew 6