My goal is to help those who have fallen or lost their way – recover and find their way back to God. Because everyone either needs that help at some point in their life…or knows someone who does.
I enjoy seeing Facebook posts and pictures of the good times had by friends and family. But imagine if, for one week, we all posted about the wrong choices we have made in life! No filter. Now there is something we probably won’t see any time soon! It messes up the appearances of the good life. One thing is certain – wrong choices – we all have them. Consequences of these choices can affect so much (finances, stability, reputation and maybe even your job).
Where to start? What gets the most of your time and energy?
Some choose to focus entirely on their career and making more money. There is certainly value in that. Some choose to work on their reputation by getting involved in the church or community. Many have chosen to fill the void left by the losses incurred from their sin and failure. If it was a divorce, some frantically seek a “replacement” spouse. If material things were lost – like a house – many are eager to be home owners once again. While all of these represent, in our culture, stability and even success to a degree – we need to consider a few things about all of these admirable goals.
You can have a great career – earning the respect and admiration by others – but be one of the loneliest people around.
You can make more money than you ever imagined, but still be as in need as a beggar standing at the intersection holding that sign on a cold, wintery day.
You can win over the respect of everyone in your church and community, but never really be close, honest or real with anyone.
You can be in such a rush to replace what was lost that you have a house but not a home. A spouse but not a marriage. A career but not a purpose.
I enjoy watching real-life mystery TV shows like 48 Hours or Dateline. Have you ever noticed how the majority of these shows have a familiar storyline? Someone who seemingly has the perfect life is suddenly murdered. The nice, big house. The successful career. The happy marriage. As the story unfolds, it is usually discovered things simply were not as they appeared. The focus was more on the outward than the inward. All the material things were propped up by debt. A house of cards. In the end, what they were chasing actually caused them more pain than pleasure.
Investing in a career, building wealth or even improving your health for stability should never be considered wrong. But like most things in life, balance and perspective is the key. Too much of almost anything is unhealthy.
If you had to choose one thing to invest your life in, what would that be? What one thing that would give the greatest pay off to your investment?
Our greatest investment is not in what builds a better life for us. Our greatest investment is centered on who is in our lives. Life is all about relationships, and the journey back from hard times will be slow without healthy relationships. Maybe that involves mending and repairing broken relationships. It might mean letting some toxic relationships go. And you never know if there are new friendships waiting to be made – just around the corner. So whether it is the people closest to you – family and friends – or new relationships to be made – there is no greater investment than that of getting to know, care and love those around you.
Those of us who have experienced setbacks in life should especially know the importance of relationships. We know that a real friend is one who stays when others flee. We know that a true friend is one who walks in while the rest of the world walks away. Maybe we didn’t experience it as much as we would have liked, but we sure do know the need for it. As Christians, we know that God is love (1 John 4:8). He has created us to love – first Him and then those around us (Matthew 22:37-39).
If you have fallen or lost your way – or know someone who has – and want to live a better story, invest heavily in the relationships around you. Love those closest to you. Serve them in a way that expects nothing in return. Encourage someone today.
The who in your life is so much more valuable than the what!
Proverbs 17:17 “A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for adversity.”