As you probably know by now, we want to help you live a better story. So over the next few weeks we want to give you a few different ways we believe you can live better and do good in the world around you.
We want to post short, to-the-point of articles that will help you become everything you were created to be.
So we're gonna kick things off this week by talking about our stuff.
We all love stuff don't we?
We buy and shop and order and get until we run out of money. We spend our paychecks on coffee and takeout, clothes and shoes. But at the end of the day, we look in the mirror and still feel empty.
What is it within us that always craves more? Why are we constantly searching for the next thing to satisfy us? We chase after the wind hoping we can find satisfaction and fulfillment, but all we’re really doing is wearing ourselves out on worthless things that never truly make us happy.
Somewhere along the way we’ve bought into this idea that the more we can get, the better life will be. But stuff doesn’t make our lives better, if anything it makes them more stressful. Because there’s always more out there. There’s always something we don’t have.
There was once a very wise man who got everything he ever dreamed of. He spent his life pursuing the next big thing. There wasn’t anything he desired that he kept from himself. And the more he acquired, the less satisfied he felt. It was as if the things he so vigorously wanted didn’t follow through on their promises. He was left feeling empty, discouraged, and worn out. This man wrote down his experiences in a book we know as Ecclesiastes. It contains some of the most practical advice for living that I’ve ever read.
Better is a handful of quietness than two hands full of toil and a striving after wind. Ecclesiastes 4:6
That’s kinda crazy when you think about it. It’s better to have one handful and be at peace, then have everything you desire and feel empty and alone. I guess for me, I don’t want to get to the end of my life just to find out I wasted it all on things I couldn’t keep.
The lie we all believe is that stuff satisfies us. But there’s a better story out there: one that gives life and offers hope. If we freed ourselves from believing that more is better, we could finally begin to embrace the idea that less is actually more. The less we have, the more we are able to help others.
I guess it starts by identifying what really matters to us. If it’s money, success, or things, then maybe our priorities are wrong. If that’s what really matters, maybe we’ve gotten offtrack. Life is about so much more than gaining material things. At the end of it all, what are we really left with?
But if we choose to have less of what doesn't matter, we’ll realize that we’re free to help others, invest in our family, and make time for the things that stir our hearts. When I think about this truth, I understand it seems a little backwards. It’s as if everything in our culture is screaming for more. Everyone wants what they want right now. But the way of Jesus gives me hope. It was never harsh or overbearing. But it was always counter-cultural. Jesus shook things up. He offered people a better way to live. And He truly believed that the key to finding life was found in giving it away.
“One’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” Luke 12:15
It makes sense when you think about it. Life isn’t about what we can gain in the few years of our existence. It isn’t found in getting more and more. Life is about loving others, giving to those in need, and showing people what living really looks like.
So real quick, here’s three ways I believe we can begin to live out this idea of less is more.
#1 Cut back.
Stop spending money on worthless things. Sure Starbucks is nice, but that $5 you spend on a latte could change someone’s whole world.
#2 Clear out.
Go through your closet. If you haven’t worn it in 6 months, give it away. If you haven’t used it since your wedding, someone else could. Life doesn’t consist in the abundance of stuff.
#3 Pay off
We’ve all got a little debt. But it keeps us from doing what we want. Start with the smallest payment and pay that sucker off. You’ll be so much more at peace when you’re not enslaved to your debt.
Lastly, invest in what matters. Life is short, and it will be over before you know it. Do you really want to spend it all on things that vanish? Less is more. Less stress. More life. Less debt. More peace. Less headache. More joy. Live a better story. There’s still time to change the narrative.