Contributor: Ryan Moffat, BS in Bible and Theology from Multnomah University. Pastor of Vast Church.
Many of us secretly live with the internal expectation that cycles through our bored minds all day that says; “If I only had (fill in the blank) then I would be happy.” Many of our blanks we filled in would be things like houses, cars, vacations, jobs, social status and things of the like.
This mental exercise puts our expectations on the treadmill of life that leaves us exhausted and always wanting more.
More and More and More
Isn’t that the American way? Bigger house, nicer car, more stuff. Dave Ramsey puts it this way; “We buy stuff we don’t want with money we don’t have to impress people we don’t like.” All of this chasing emanates from the lie “If only (fill in the blank) then I’ll be happy.”
How do you combat such powerful internal chasing? What would motivate someone to turn from such chasing to another pursuit?
G.K. Chesteron said; “The only way you feel grateful for even an ugly weed is to feel totally unworthy of even an ugly weed.” Gratitude is the fruit that grows in the fertile soil of humility. Proud people always need more (and chase it), humble people have the internal joy that doesn’t demand more rather it celebrates whatever has been given.
Humility knows and believes that the accumulation of more (more money, more stuff, more influence) without the development of more character, more inner strength and more personal godliness is a short-term approach to life.
Developing Character Instead
But the real payoff is what happens for an individual is when they shift their focus from acquiring more stuff to developing more character. What happens is that suddenly there is a greater bandwidth of energy and focus to invest in what matters most; your “inner man”, what the Bible calls “character”.
D.L. Moody said, “If you take care of your character, your reputation will take care of itself.” Moody shows us that an investment into your character will always manifest itself into the seen and known areas of your life.
Engaging Your Personal Issues
The second great benefit of turning away from secondary pursuits is that it gives you (the individual) the necessary time and focus to engage your personal issues that have caused so much damage (your addictions, your self-destructive behavior, your relational failings). Buying new stuff has a certain “therapeutic” characteristic to it. It can numb one into false sense of happiness. When we say “no” to more stuff and “yes” to the hard work of inner transformation amazing fruit can take root and grow.
Are you sick and tired of being sick and tired? Rebel against the gods of money, stuff and status and embrace the greatest investment you could ever make…the investment of deep, transformational, personal growth.
Community Discussion – Share your thoughts here!
What has been your experience with turning away from the pursuit of money, property and prestige? What impact has this made on your recovery? What advice do you have for others new to this journey of change?
About the Author:
Ryan received his BS in Bible and Theology and a minor in counseling from Multnomah University. He has pastored students, families and is passionate about Christ-centered recovery and healing. He’s been married to his beautiful wife Michelle for 13 years and they enjoy raising four crazy, unique and special kids together.
Ryan is the teaching pastor at Vast Church in Sisters, OR and is currently working on his Masters in Theology at Western Seminary in Portland, OR
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Last Updated & Reviewed By: Jacquelyn Ekern, MS, LPC on August 8th, 2015
Published on AddictionHope.com