Living More Abundantly – what does that look like? There is no right or wrong answer. I would venture to say that it is certainly relative among different people. After going through several instances of layoffs, I came to realize that I really wasn’t living life. I was on a hamster wheel of going to work and paying bills. Funny how it takes something painful or difficult to bring us to a realization of where we should have been all along. I realized that I had no joy in my life. I’d always wanted to travel, meet people and experience different cultures. Yet somehow, I’d gotten side tracked with building a career and becoming what “I thought” successful was. I felt hopeless. I felt as if I was a rat trapped in a vicious cycle of which I couldn’t get out.
As the years rolled by with me being employed and mostly unemployed, I was getting older and wiser. I started to realize that the things that I thought were so important really weren’t important at all. My perspective changed. The hook in which I hung my hat was on this thought: if Jesus died for me to have an abundantly or full life, why didn’t I have it?
I realized that having more freedom to spend my time enjoying my life was important and the fact that I wasn’t doing that was not pleasing to God. I realized that I wanted to spend my life living out my calling and my purpose. I realized that I would never be able to retire if I continued to work for someone else. And even if I did have an opportunity to retire, I would be too old to enjoy it! I didn’t want to be one of those elderly people whom I see all the time. They can barely walk yet they are working. For me this was a scary thought. My goal was to make sure it remained a thought and not a reality. My solution was to start my own business.
Living More Abundantly – what does that look like in your life?
Abundant living for you may mean:
- Being more involved in your church
- Having more peace (my personal favorite)
- Having time to work out or just taking a stroll in the park
- Not fighting the traffic during the long commutes to and from work
- Focusing on your passion
- Spending more time with your family
- Not having to worry about how the bills will get paid
- Having the financial freedom to fund those extracurricular activities for child(ren)
- Going to that five-star restaurant and ordering whatever you want on the menu
Okay, so maybe you’re not sure what an abundant life means for you. That’s perfectly fine. I’ve been there myself. You know that something isn’t right. But you’re not sure what that something is. You know you’re not happy. But you can’t quite put into words why.
Here are a few things I did when I found myself in that space.
- Reflection – I took some time for inner reflection. This can sometimes be painful because who wants to think about the things that are really an issue in your life. But it takes courage to do it and strength to learn from it. I thought about my past, present and my future. What have I learned from my journey? What are the things that I would do differently? What are the things that I wouldn’t change?
- Pray – I took some time to pray and meditate on what was missing from my life. What was the real reason I felt so unhappy? I will tell you that the answer was I wasn’t living in my purpose. My life hadn’t turned out the way I’d thought it would. Once I was clear on what was missing, I prayed about how to rectify the problem. The answer was something that wasn’t given instantly. So, I had to be patient.
- Take Action! – Once God gave me the solution, I didn’t just sit on it. But I took action!
Abundant living doesn’t have to be earth shattering. Sometimes it’s the small things in life that make it worth living. My desires for an abundant life are really to just have a life of purpose, fulfillment and to give to those who are in need. Sounds pretty simple right? Even simple hopes that are unforeseen or are not being fulfilled can make your heart sick. It’s important that you live the life in which you were created to live which is your best life! I challenge you to do the work you need to do to change your life. Change takes work. You owe it to yourself and you owe it to God. Think about it.
Don’t just exist, but live and live more abundantly.