You’re probably reading this and you were most likely not the winner of the recent Mega Millions or Powerball jackpot.
While listening to the radio the other day, the hosts talked at length about the possibility of being the winner of the jackpot. The first host described with great sincerity how he would be extremely fortunate and happy to win, as most would.
The second host chimed in with what seemed to be an on-air personal epiphany of reality and truth: “Money can buy you luxury, but I don’t think it can buy the happiness that I want.” This promptly deflated the boisterous humor of the segment, with which they quickly moved on to another topic.
I turned off the radio and continued to drive, processing. This brief moment resembled what many followers of Christ have to eventually wrestle with: the tension between happiness and possessions.
I’ve noticed throughout the Psalms how various authors beautifully describe happiness and, more so, how uncomplicated they make it.
“Happy are the people whose God is the Lord” Psalm 144:15
The simplicity of it is that when I am focused on Christ, my soul is at rest. When it is at rest, I often view possessions in utilitarian terms instead of prestige or social posturing. My contentment thermometer increases and any sense of unrest becomes more aligned with the injustices of the world and not, anymore, what I do or do not possess.
When I accepted my first professional job offer, the people advising me were quick to discuss the job benefits rather than the value of the experience and all that I may learn. I’m alright with you pointing out that I’m a Gen Z’er and some of my attitude toward the subject could be generational indoctrination…but, I also know what the Word says.
While it is important and necessary to assess at the monetary portion of our work, I have to wonder if our motivation is always in right alignment with God’s ways. Is it possible that, at times, my emotional distress over finances is more closely related to having wants without the means instead of simply living within my means?
As Christians we should understand that God will always provide. He provides for the birds of the air; he’s going to provide for you. I just personally hope that the provision never comes in a form of competition for my happiness and, ultimately, my focus on Him.