When I was much younger, I loved to go for walks through wealthy neighborhoods and think, “someday”. The houses were amazing, and the yards were equally impressive. I don’t know what these people did for a living, but they were obviously doing something right…or so I presumed. The yards were beautiful – bright flowers, perfectly trimmed hedges, and huge lush green lawns. The houses were jaw-droppingly unique – massive in size, with beautiful stone exteriors, large pristine windows and a huge handmade door that quickly drew your attention to the entrance.

However, something eventually dawned on me. Almost always it was dark inside. I can’t remember many times where there ever seemed to be signs of life. In fact, the entire neighborhood often resembled a well-kept ghost town. They had pools, but no one ever seemed to swim. They had basketball and tennis courts, but they seemed more as a prop for the house

I then shifted my thoughts to “well, if we owned a house like that, then we wouldn’t let it sit there lifeless like that. We would enjoy it.” But would we? So often, we ingest the verbal diarrhea that society is feeding us. We think we will be happy if only…I had a nicer car, a bigger house, took exotic vacations, yada, yada, yada

What we often miss is that it is not things we are lacking in our lives that are the problem, but rather the need for our soul to be fed. It’s the pursuit of “things” that ruins our souls. Recently, a research company affiliated with the University of Chicago found that people with the highest paying jobs with a higher status were the least happy; and those who were paid less, had less status, but found meaning in their jobs, were far happier

John Ortberg summed it up well when he said, “The soul desires a life that is more than the satisfaction of desire. In other words, you will never achieve satisfaction if you make the goal of your life achieving satisfaction.

If God blessed you with great wealth, then my hope for you is that you pay more attention to your soul that the things money can buy. If you are someone who struggles to make a competitive income, don’t envy those that have much…for often they have very little. For if your soul is right with God, then you are the richest beyond measure.

Mark Etting

Author Mark Etting

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