So imagine you’ve suddenly come into a large amount of money. You can choose to increase your standard of living, make some more decadent choices… After all, you’re certainly free to. The money is rightfully yours, and you’ve worked hard on a small income for so long.
But this freedom also implies you can choose not to make such choices. Your newfound wealth also gives you options to spend it on the less fortunate – at least some of it. To help out a family member in crisis, or to maintain your standard of living and save for something more long-term than a few extra outfits every week.
Whether we have a little, or a lot, we have choices. Every day of our lives. We have choices and freedoms others do not.
And when we have Christ in our lives we are never poor. When we join his family we immediately inherit all the privileges. Not because we deserve them through the things we’ve done, but because he is loving, forgiving, gracious – and he simply wants us in his family. He wants to lavish upon us spiritual blessings such as we’ve never dreamed. Offer us a living, breathing relationship that by its nature blesses others.
But sometimes we think too much. Sometimes we try so hard to analyse all the ins and outs of our faith. And that’s important to do sometimes. But we can get so lost in the theory that we forget that, quite simply, we are astoundingly wealthy. We have so much to be thankful for. And simply, so much to give.
We can tend to act like rich people who don’t know they’re loaded. Or who, perhaps, don’t really want to be. We believe that wallowing in self-pity is somehow more spiritual. More godly. Not that depression doesn’t happen to us sometimes, believe me. But recognising our true inheritance can put a delightful spin on things.
And at some stage, it helps us to realise the life we think is ‘the ultimate’ is really just a pale imitation of the joy that’s found in Christ…
C.S. Lewis put it this way:
“We are half-hearted creatures fooling around with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
Far too easily pleased… because perhaps our way of living – fulfilling as it might seem – is just that little bit too comfortable? Too familiar?
What might we be missing?
Again, we have choices. Do we choose to recognise – deeply – the spiritual endowment we’ve already received, or do we go on making mud pies? Do we let the love we have overflow to others who don’t know it yet… or do we simply keep it to ourselves?
We have to truly know and understand what we have in order to be able to give it away. And we need God’s help with that.
Lord, we pray for understanding of your rich, deep, all-consuming love, so that passing it on becomes the easiest, most wonderful thing in the world. Oh God, may we truly know…
One of the best ways to combat depression or sadness is by remembering how wealthy we really are…how many blessings He has supplied And then by sharing to help those less fortunate, even when we ourselves may be financially challenged. We always have something we can give to another, even if it is just five minutes of our time or a simple, warm smile…Blessings to you, Ali, and thanks for sharing.
How very true Sheila – connecting with the reality of what we have, and giving out of that wealth… I have definitely found this to be true – when I’ve been in the depths of depression I certainly haven’t felt like reaching out, but God has prompted me to at times nonetheless. On these occasions some of the depression weakened, and my perspective of what others were going through, and what I actually had, changed.
Thanks for being an encouragement xx
Just a smile, enjoying a flower or beautiful sunset and knowing my awesome God created it all in His love for us makes me feel wealthy indeed! It’s good to remember and think about. Much wisdom in your words. Thanks!
Yes! A wonderful image of God’s generous gifts to us, in so many forms! Thank you Joy!
So true…it’s really human nature to want what we do not have, to the point that we don’t realize how much we have. God has bestowed upon us so much spiritual wealth, and yet we like to imagine ourselves as poor and lacking in what we “need” in this world (or rather, want). What an incorrect image this is! Great post, really thought-provoking 🙂
Well said! We all struggle with discontent (or ignorance perhaps) and often fail to see what’s right in front of us. But God can always open our eyes again to just what he’s done, and will do. And I guess we won’t fully understand or realise til we get to heaven 🙂
This post touched me, so much. I loved your prayer at the end and am praying it too! God bless you as you help us realize how much we have in Jesus!
Wonderful Debbie, I’m so glad! Be blessed and have a beautiful day xx
Great post Ali! Thanks!
Yes ma’am! Thankfulness is key in understanding true wealth, and I cling to it as hard as I can in this interesting social reality that tends to weigh us on the material possessions we have and the material milestones that we’ve arrived at…
Coming from that side of the fence, I am also striving to embrace the spiritual fruits of having means to empower others and to build services that are valuable to humanity as well. It’s a balance that we have to strike, and while I don’t know exactly what it looks like, I’m hopeful to get closer to the mark than the pervious generation…
Yes, well said. God bless you as you use what you have to help inspire change in other people’s lives. It sounds like you’re really thinking through the issues and doing what you can to make a difference in not just the material sense. Thanks for dropping by and encouraging my blog.
You are so right, we do have choices. I can choose to worry, be upset during difficult times, or be angry about what I don’t have – or I can release my burdens in prayer, accept that life can be hard sometimes, and enjoy the beauty that is around me. It feels better to recognize the fullness of my life.
Very well said.