As I read the USA front page article on the deficit reduction, this quote nearly jumped off the page. You can understand why. No true believer could fail to see the spiritual analogy! People want to balance the budget, but they don’t want to give up anything to do so. Unfortunately, there are born-again believers who want "the spiritual blessings in the heavenlies" (Eph. 1:3, 20), but are unwilling to give up (die to) treasures on earth.
On one occasion a wealthy young man came to Jesus asking how to get to Heaven, and Jesus told him “go and sell all you have and give the money to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven” (Mat. 19:21). And though the young man wanted to go to Heaven, he was unwilling to give up anything (die) to do so. Seeing a teachable moment, Jesus told the Disciples “everyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or property, for my sake, will receive a hundred times as much in return and will have eternal life” (Mat. 19:29).
Jesus' first followers found themselves facing economic hardships because they decided to follow Him. But we are told they “accepted joyfully the seizure of their property” (Heb. 10:34). I don’t know if you and I will ever have to endure such persecution in our life time. But before that happens, it should be a settled issue: to gain Heaven, we are willing to give up (die to) our treasures on earth.