I was recently reading an article by Anthony Moore about the 5 Things You Must Sacrifice To Have A Better Future, and it got me to thinking.
What are the things that we need to give up in order to have the life of purpose, peace, and abundance that God desires for us?
After some prayer and contemplation, here’s my list of the 5 Things we should consider giving up if we really want to experience purpose, peace and abundance in our lives.
1) Comparing your Spiritual Life to Other People’s Spiritual Lives
Probably one of the BIGGEST obstacles to us becoming who we are meant to be is by comparing our spiritual journey to other people’s spiritual journeys.
We stop our own growth in prayer by telling ourselves that “I’ll never have a prayer life like hers” or “I can’t spend time in quiet meditation like he does every morning.”
Every time we compare ourselves to someone else, we will discover that we don’t “measure up” and then we tend to give up.
My challenge to you is to give up comparing how well your spiritual life is in relation to someone else. That is their journey with God, not yours.
2) Not Being Willing to Continue Learning & Growing on the Journey of Faith
An attitude of unwillingness to learn and grow is a HUGE obstacle if it is a part of our spiritual life.
What are some signs that I might be unwilling to learn and grow? Thoughts or comments to opportunities given by you about attending an adult faith formation class or Bible Study with responses like “I already learned or studied that” or “I went to Catholic School, so I know what I need to know already” are a couple of signs that we might be in trouble in this department.
A really wise pastor once asked the people in his congregation to raise their hands if they had either gone on to receive an advanced degree, or have had to do continuing education/training to acquire or update skills necessary to do their jobs properly. Almost everyone raised their hands.
He then asked them, “So why do you think it’s ok for you to try and get by with the equivalent of an 8th grade education for your spiritual life?”
Continuing to learn and grow in our understanding of God and the faith is a lifelong process, so we need to set aside any unwillingness we may have to not keep learning and growing.
3) Your Busyness
One of the greatest challenges to growing in our interior life is actually taking the time to do it.
Unfortunately, since our world values what we “do” vs who we “are”, this tends to mean that we find ourselves constantly scrambling from one thing to the next in our pursuit to provide (and prove) value by doing as much as we can, and we find ourselves harried, worried and anxious in the midst of all of our busyness.
And what this usually means is that the very things we are busy doing will often prevent us from doing the very things we should be doing, i.e. putting first things first.
The concept of “first things first” is the long running practice of putting the things concerning our relationship with God first in our lives.
In other words, when we put first things first when organizing our day, we prioritize the scheduling of our prayer time, and/or frequenting the sacraments or going to Mass first, and then add other responsibilities associated with our particular vocation and state of life.
Bottom line, we have to set aside our busyness if we are to progress in our spiritual life.
4) Being Comfortable
One of the biggest barriers to our finding purpose, peace and abundance in our life is our desire for comfort, our desire for being comfortable.
In particular, modern entertainment–distractions like binge watching the latest tv shows, immersing ourselves in online gaming or social media, enjoying delicacies or fine wines, or whatever else brings us pleasure, distracts us from the spiritual life.
It’s not that any of these things are bad or wrong in themselves, but all things should be in moderation, and assist us in being able to progress towards transforming union with God.
So only “comfortable” thing we should be doing is “getting comfortable with being uncomfortable” as we strive to become the holy men and women God created us to be.
5) Spending Time doing things that you are only “good at”
When you are doing things that you are only good at, you will inadvertently miss out on doing the things that you are truly great at.
This is related to our giving up our busyness, but the reality is that when you are only doing things that you are only good at, then we tend to miss out on saying YES to doing all of the GREAT things that God designed and created you to do.
Because God doesn’t want us to have just a “good life.”
No, God wants us to have an abundant life, a life to the full.
If you want to have something be different in your spiritual life, you need to be willing to do things you have never done.
But start TODAY to claim the life that God created you for.
Do whatever it takes for you to stop comparing yourself to others, and remember that this is your journey, not someone else’s.
Be mindful that because this is a lifelong journey, it is going to take A LOT of learning and growing, and for you to have the time you are going to need to do this continuous learning and growing, you need to set aside your busyness and your comfort.
But most of all, you need to discover the things that you are great at. “Good enough” shouldn’t be a part of your vocabulary because you are designed for greatness.
So go get busy giving up these 5 things in your life, so you can claim the life of purpose, peace and abundance that God created you for.
You just need to SAY YES.