The Abundant Life: Riches money can’t buy…
Those living the abundant life are hard workers, but they aren’t working for fame and fortune.
Fame is a fickle mistress. What is popular today may not be popular tomorrow. So if our identity is based on our fame, how would we feel when the adulation of others is gone?
Money is a resource that can buy some physical things, but not what makes life worth living. It can’t buy health, a good marriage, a loving relationship with our children, true friendship, patience, integrity, trust, peace of mind, or wisdom. So if our identity is based on our fortune, how would we feel when we have to fly coach instead of first class?
Working for the wrong reasons can be distressing. After all, we work, work, work for stuff and when we die we have to leave it all to others. We do all the work and others get the benefit. We don’t really know what they will do with our accumulated wealth. (Ecclesiastes 2:17-19) All our precious, special treasures will end up in somebody else’s yard sale. Believe it or not, life is not measured by what we own. (Luke 12:15) And we can’t take it with us when we leave this earth behind!
Why do we work then? This is an important question, because why we do what we do determines our outlook on life.
Work is important to God. God set the example in the beginning by working to create everything. (Genesis 1 & 2) Adam and Eve were told to work in the Garden of Eden. (Genesis 2:15) We are told to work with all our might. (Ecclesiastes 9:10) We are to provide for our families. (1 Timothy 5:8) One biblical principle I stressed often to my children was: If you don’t work, you don’t eat. (2 Thessalonians 3:10) It was particularly effective before a meal. Having a work ethic is very important to God. However, God wants us to work for the right reasons.
If our purpose is just to accumulate wealth or become famous, then once we achieve those goals we will no longer have a purpose. An unhealthy desire for fame and fortune causes people to succumb to temptations and lusts that lead to destruction. (1 Timothy 5:9-10) Better to pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, patience, gentleness, and love. Better to have a right motivation. (1 Timothy 5:11)
The Bible says we should work hard, as if we are working for God, not men, because God will give us our reward. We are actually serving Jesus Christ through our work. (Colossians 3:23-24) Working hard and enjoying the fruits of our labor is actually a good thing when God is the focus of our lives. (Ecclesiastes 5:18-19)
Those living the abundant life work to honor God, not to gain fame and fortune. Fame and fortune can be nice when kept in perspective, but not necessary to live an abundant life.
“…I have come that they may have life and that they
may have it more abundantly.” ~John 10:10 (KJV)