Ask the Right Question
In every network marketing class of sorts, the question is asked "what would you do with x amount of money?" The idea behind it is to get you to dream, think big, all that jazz. While on the outside this is a fabulous mental exercise but at its core, it's a horrible question. The mode behind it is, 'see all that stuff you wrote down? You can't have any of it until you earn that amount of money you just wrote.' The idea behind such line of questioning is to break us out of our poverty mindsets, cause us to be so hungry for our dreams that we won't stop until we get it! We won't stop if our children have an emotional crisis. We won't stop if our marriage is hanging by a thread because we have invested more time into our goal than our spouse or family. We won't stop when there is a shift in the family dynamics. We. Just. Won't. Stop. The question that follows up with this then is, so when we earn this x money, will we be able to stop, retire, live life with ease? If you're wise you intuitively understand the answer to that is a resounding no way José. With the shekels come the shackles. Earning a sizable income is fantastic and rankly, quite biblical, but it is the way in which we go about earning said income. It's who's advice we listen to and Who's advice we ignore. So what's the right question? "What would you do if you had an unlimited amount of time?" You see, time is a much bigger commodity. It's far more valuable, and much costlier when it is lost. We can lose millions of dollars and earn it back in a snap. Losing millions of minutes can never again be regained. It's been said that on their deathbeds, no one ever says "oh how I wish I had spent more time at work, or pursuing my career." No, every doctor worth their salt will tell you sadly, they hear "oh had I spent more TIME with my loved ones." Or even, "oh I had I invested more time on my faith and knew God better!" When we ask the question, "if time wasn't an issue, what would I do?", the game changes. Thoughts spring to mind like, plant a garden, take walks with my children, learn to make beans. (I'm not joking, that one is weighing on my mind) When I stop fantasizing about a Laura Ingalls lifestyle and ask the question for real, something altogether leaps to mind. Don't get me wrong, I long to garden, and walking with the kids. Yet I have a brownish thumb and I do take walks here and there with the kids. They get my full attention, as much as they want honestly. If time were an unending commodity, what I desire is not considered work per sa. It's worthy work, but not in the category of good money made doing this. If I trust the Lord, however, money because a tertiary issue. It's the pursuing my calling that is the grander issue at hand. Not only that, if time was unlimited, I would spend far more hours in prayer. As it is, my prayer times extend from an hour and a half to two hours. It's hard for me to not get lost reading the scriptures, praying, then reading some more, looking up a word in a commentary, and getting lost again with the nuances of what the Lord meant for us to gain from that passage. My family thinks if I had a whole day of zero obligations, I would literally spend at minimum eight hours in my prayer room. Probably true. Unfortunately in the United States we say and hear "I just don't have time for that", all too often. While the that is good and lovely and pure, it falls by the wayside. Psalm 57:2 says, “I cry out to God Most High, to God who fulfills his purpose for me.” It's HIM who fulfills our purpose, and what if, just what if maybe that thing you long to do but find scarcely little time, is the very thing He has called you to do? What if your life, my life, is busied up with utter rubbish of to dos and perceived needs, yet has zero to do with fulfilling HIS purposes? Notice in this verse the key point is the psalmist cries out to God Most High. He not only cries out to God, he recognizes His omnipotence, His power and His importance. Throughout the Psalms, the writers have such a sharp understanding of a healthy fear of the Lord that they know what He is capable of, on their behalf and if they were to dare walk against His will and purposes. The right question, dear friend, is not about money for the Word says, don't run after those things like the Gentiles (pagans) do. It admonishes us to seek first, (demand and strive for) His kingdom and His righteousness. The real question is what part of His kingdom ought I to pursue, and His righteousness, how can I allow more of my time to be invested on pursing that rather than any clothes, food, or beverage.