What dominates your thought life gives an indication of what you care most in life. An ambitious person would most likely wake up each day perked up with the prospect of a possible success. A teacher can wake up each day occupied by all the demands of teaching. A farmer would greet each day with his mind on the crops and his hands in the soil. A mother would face each day with thoughts of battling the chores and needs of the family. A homeless person may meet the day with thoughts of how and where to find food for survival. Different people think different things according to what their needs are and what they value most in their life.
If we think of it, we value certain things in life because we want to have a good life. We seek for the kind of life that would satisfy us or that would keep us surviving. We want to live well. We want to live in abundance. For others, they just want to survive. When we ponder further we then realize that to live a good life we should have sufficiency of the basic needs such as food, clothing, and shelter. When they are sufficient or in abundance, we feel secure and happy. Then that would connect us to how we could have sufficient supply of food, clothing, and shelter. Our answer would always be money. Without money we could not live comfortably. How can we have food, clothing, and shelter when we do not have money? Then all our focus and drive culminate to the very thing that we want to possess so we could live comfortably — money. We think money is the answer to the comforts of life. So when we wake up each day and we think of our work, we think of our family, we make plans, we work hard, and we do all we can in our capacity to reach success, deep within, it is because of money. Not really because we are materialistic or greedy but because we think it is the key to the prosperous or successful life. Of course money can bring comfort and can make us prosperous. Money and lots of it mean wealth and great opportunities. To live with an abundance of money is not just to live comfortably but to live more than the comforts that the world can offer. But money itself could not give true comfort and true happiness. Like all other things, money is temporary.
It is futile to focus on money and to hope that it would bring us to that good life where abundance flows. No, I do not mean that we should stop working and stop earning. I do not mean that we can waste our money away to anything that catches our fancy. I do not mean too that money is not needed or that it is not important. I also do not mean that we should not save money. Money is a need. Money is important. But life is not all about money. When we look at our life and when we work and strive for success, it should not be all about money. There should be a greater purpose and nobler intention than just by getting rich and accumulating wealth. Money should not come first but should be a subservient resource or need to the more valuable things in life. Otherwise, we can become its slaves. When God could have use it to bless us with abundance, it can become the root of evil and sorrows of life.
“For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. Some have been led astray from the faith in their greed, and have pierced themselves through with many sorrows.”– 1 Timothy 6:10 (WEB)
Life is more than food or clothing. In essence, then, life is more than money. We may be deceived into believing money has all the answers. Money can save us from many troubles. Yes, it can in some ways. But love of it will surely bring more sorrows than happiness. We may rationalize that we can go on acquiring for more money or go on working for more money and would not love it more than other else in this life. But no, we can deceive ourselves too. It is impossible to resist or to not give devotion to something that can give us abundance, enjoyment, and carefreeness.
“But those who are determined to be rich fall into a temptation, a snare, and many foolish and harmful lusts, such as drown men in ruin and destruction.”– 1 Timothy 6:9 (WEB)
“He who loves silver shall not be satisfied with silver, nor he who loves abundance, with increase. This also is vanity. When goods increase, those who eat them are increased; and what advantage is there to its owner, except to feast on them with his eyes?”– Ecclesiastes 5:10-11 (WEB)
“No servant can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other; or else he will hold to one and despise the other. You aren’t able to serve God and Mammon.”– Luke 16:13 (WEB)
Jesus said life is more than these things we are so worried about. We are anxious about food and clothing. We are anxious about the money we earn. We should not worry about them Jesus explained. And we might think why does Jesus teach us not to worry of these things when in fact we need them to live? Yes, we are not to worry about them because God highly values us, He knows that we need these things, and He can provide all our needs (Matthew 6:24-30). What we should devote our thoughts and time to is to things that would truly add more moments to our life in eternity. These temporal things can never add a single day to our lifespan (Matthew 6:27). These are of lesser importance.
“Therefore I tell you, don’t be anxious for your life: what you will eat, or what you will drink; nor yet for your body, what you will wear. Isn’t life more than food, and the body more than clothing? See the birds of the sky, that they don’t sow, neither do they reap, nor gather into barns. Your heavenly Father feeds them. Aren’t you of much more value than they?”– Matthew 6:25-26 (WEB)
We should set our minds to the more valuable things in life. They are the things of God. We should seek God first and it is His promise that when we seek Him, He provides us with what we need (Matthew 6:33). We can have food, clothing, and shelter. That means He provides us financially. To seek for God means to seek for His righteousness. It is not an occasional prayer of asking God for help or blessing. To seek for God’s righteousness is a deliberate intention and act of making obedience to God a lifestyle. And all these things shall be added to the one who seek God first in his life.
“But seek first God’s Kingdom and his righteousness; and all these things will be given to you as well.”– Matthew 6:33 (WEB)
The way to blessing and abundance is a life rooted in the Lord Jesus Christ.
“The result of humility and the fear of Yahweh is wealth, honor, and life.”– Proverbs 22:4 (WEB)
Yes, life is more than these things. Life is all about God. When we are near the point of death, we don’t cry for our money, our clothing, or food, or our possessions. We cry out the name of God. There we know what truly matters all along. Live for what matters while life gives us the opportunity.