Money. Money is what everyone claims to be the standard for success and with money comes power. We all need money, of course, to buy essential items and other wants. It allows us to provide for ourselves and our families. We can give it to those in need. But mainly, we spend 40 plus hours a week working to gain as much money and material items as possible.
Society defines us by our work position and wealth. The most influential people are normally the ones who have the most money. These people have worked hard, no doubt, but they find their identity in the money they have. I, too, have spent my time and energy trying to obtain the most money possible. I think about how much I have every day. I work 40 hours a week, plus a couple side jobs to get more. I am constantly thinking about how to gain more money; how it would be nice to have a few extra thousand dollars or be in a profession such as an athlete and get paid millions of dollars each year. I spend most of my days working and almost no time, if any at all, on activities I enjoy doing. I rarely do any reading, disc golfing, or exercising. Yet, this is exactly how almost every one of us lives out our days, at least until retirement.
It is this trend and belief in working constantly to gain the most wealth possible that I want to write about. It is unhealthy mentally and physically to constantly work. It is unhealthy to believe our identities are based in personal wealth.
That is why I base my identity in Jesus Christ. I believe my worth is found in my relationship with Him. Jesus has given me new life and I have been given a chance to do great things in His name. I want to use my talents and gifts to spread the Word and bring more people to know Jesus.
Yet, I fail at this every single day. I find myself thinking all day about making money to support my family and spend on material things. I know I need to work to support my family, and that makes it difficult to focus on Jesus. I work, come home, do anything else that needs done, and spend zero time with Jesus. I forget to pray, read my Bible, or think about Him. It is terrible, but I am human. I fail and I sin.
I want to improve every day. I want to work hard and succeed at what I do. I want to be someone who shows empathy and commits my life to Jesus each day. I have realized that I need to do a better job. I clearly fail if I don’t have a set plan to improve. I am planning on making changes to the way I act and think and I hope others can do the same if they so wish.
Wake up early and do a devotional
I felt like I woke up too early for work so I never wanted to commit to 15 minutes earlier in order to read a devotional. With my shift change, I will have more time in the mornings to do this. It is a simple and effective way to start the day out right. Reading through a devotional sets the mind and the heart on a good track for the day.
Take time to pray
Spending time praying and praising God is important. God knows our hearts, of course, but we realize more of what we are thinking when we speak aloud. Speaking our thoughts provides us a second chance to understand our thoughts and desires.
Listen to Christian radio or podcast
We travel to work every day of the week and spend hours on the road. This is the perfect time to listen to a Christian radio station or podcasts that discuss religion, society, or culture. Any of these will engage the mind and enable the analysis of our ideas and beliefs.
I am starting these this week because I have failed to focus on God for too long. I desired money over my relationship with God. I want to read devotionals, pray more, and engage my mind to grow in my relationship with Him. As I grow, I hopefully will better display Christ through me. I have constantly thought about finding success in money, but I know that it is not my main motivation in life. My motivation is to know God more so that I can display the love Christ shows me.