There is this popular idea in our world today that the best thing that could happen to you would be to win the lottery. Then you could spend the remainder of your days on a beach somewhere, living the “good life.” But nothing could be further from the truth. Interestingly, many people end up going broke within a few years of winning.
“What if the life you wanted was actually right in front of you?”
A year and half ago, I transitioned to working part-time. I thought I had prepared and planned for everything. However, I discovered there was still one big shift I hadn’t planned for… silencing the call of my desires. My desire for shopping and other material indulgences seemed perfectly fine to me, especially since I didn’t have anyone to take care of but myself. Although my spending habits have never been extravagant, I did enjoy this newfound freedom. However, as I settled into my new lifestyle and income, I became increasingly aware that the end game as a Christian is not about acquiring more and more material goods and wealth. In fact, it’s quite the opposite.
It is dying to self and living for Christ.
This change in my lifestyle is more than just a journey to own less stuff and live for Christ. It’s about not allowing myself to fall into the trap of how society defines success—brand name clothing, price of your car, square footage of your house, dollars in your bank account, even the model of your cellphone. Too often, those who make, spend and keep the most resources for themselves are labeled as the “successful ones.”
It’s quite the contrary in the economy of the Kingdom: it all comes down to dying to self and living for Christ (Gal.2:20; 2 Cor.5:17). This simple yet essential truth changes hearts and minds. For me, it has meant a shift from being rooted in the nebulous idea of what I wanted to accomplish, into a new approach to life that is fueled by the excitement of being known and used by God. Each day, I have the opportunity to see life through this lens and everything has changed. In fact, it infuses meaning into everything I do from the seemingly mundane to the obviously profound.
“Lord, my life is not my own, what would you have me do?”