TWO SIDES OF STABILITY


A MESSAGE OF SPIRITUAL INSPIRATION FOR WORKDAYS

Message Synopsis: This message discusses how the love of stability can be just as harmful to spiritual growth as the love of money. It encourages readers to pursue professional changes and other life improvements, regardless of uncertain outcomes. It reminds everyone that God will lovingly take their hands during new journeys and frightening periods of transition. It reminds readers to pursue growth and happiness over stability.

And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:19 NLT

And he sent them out to proclaim the kingdom of God and to heal the sick. He told them, “Take nothing for the journey—no staff, no bag, no bread, no money, no extra shirt.” Luke 9: 2-3 NIV

The love of money is a root that grows all sorts of evil. Family members might fight over money, politicians might exploit people’s dreams and goodwill for monetary gain, and business owners might be willing to pollute beautiful land or water in order to save a few bucks. People might even become violent or kill for money.

It seems easy to recognize the potential problems of a lust for dollars, but often less obvious to us is how the love of stability can be just as detrimental to our spiritual health as the love of money. The quest for unshakeable stability in our lives can actually ruin us. When we insist that our days fit into certain outlines—when we demand that God keep things in our life one way or the other—then we forget the true nature of our spirituality. God isn’t about rigidity, He’s about growth and the expansion of our hearts.

Stability, like money, can be a good thing for us. There is nothing wrong with finding a reliable way to provide for our families. There is nothing wrong with having a life that includes a steady paycheck, good health and dental insurance, a retirement plan, and even insurance against death. There is nothing wrong with wanting to set down roots for our family in a particular city or house and stay put for a while. There is nothing wrong with any of these things, but when we become so afraid of change that we fight even necessary revisions to our plans and status quos—when we absolutely refuse to accept new situations and challenges with an open mind—then we have to re-evaluate our relationship with stability.

We have to ask ourselves if we’ve ever allowed our demand for stability to keep us at a job that makes us too tired and angry to be a good spouse, parent, or inquisitive seeker of God. We have to ask ourselves if stability has ever become a god to us.

In a society where money and stability are two of the greatest measures of success and achievement, it is extremely acceptable for people to ignore everything else in the pursuit of these two things. No one will usually scold us for taking on more hours at work to add to the retirement account, even if those extra hours come at the expense of family time, and few people will tell us that something is wrong with our decision to “stick it out” at a job for a good pension, even if the demanding work environment seems to be taking away from our light personality or spiritual resilience.

As long as a job provides stability, high pay, or both, many sacrifices seem easily justifiable, but not all sacrifices are healthy.

Today, ask God for the strength to pursue growth over stability. Ask Him for the courage to embark on whatever new professional and personal journeys are truly best for you right now, even if those journeys seem a little frightening and their outcomes are less than predictable. Remember how Jesus instructed His followers to journey confidently toward spiritual fulfillment in His name, assuring them not to worry about provisions or elaborate planning. Today, pray for the courage to sacrifice stability for the sake of the more important things in your life.

Prayer: Dear God, please give me the wisdom to identify the things that are truly important for my spiritual growth. Please grant me the courage to follow those important things, even if doing so is frightening and comes with few material assurances. Please bless my hopes and dreams today, and guide me during new journeys.

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Thanks so much for checking out this week's message of spiritual inspiration for workdays. I hope that you'll sign up for The Lovely Grind so that you'll receive every message every week of the year. Take care of yourself and your loved ones, and I hope to see you again soon.

Sincerely,

Michael S. Priebe, Lovely Grind author & web creator

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