“Certainly, possessions, money, and power can give a momentary thrill, the illusion of being happy, but they end up possessing us and making us always want to have more, never satisfied…. “Put On Christ” in your life, place your trust in him and you will never be disappointed!” – Pope Francis
This message stood out to me today. When I read this, it made me look back on a whole set of different things in my life. Today, I have a life, while yet not perfect, is not one where I do without. I have a good job, a house, a loving family, and amazing friends. I really could not ask for a better setting, in this moment right now. Even with all the pain and suffering being dealt with in the world, my little fiefdom is a nice place to be.
I have issues. Trust me, I have written about them extensively. I have struggles and concerns and just have issues with life in general. From mental health, to general health, to worries about my family, I deal with all of that. I know what it means to struggle from paycheck to paycheck and have to worry how I am going to feed my family, let alone myself. I have also seen amazing highs, stood on mountains and see the sun set, and been places that others have only heard of in stories. I have been really blessed throughout it all, whether I acknowledged the Grace given to me by God or not. Yes, I know God has had a hand in everything (whether you believe in a creator or not, you can not change my mind on that fact).
What really struck me is the fact that, when I look back on my life, and all the hard struggling times I had, in previous lives, I would have tried to rely on myself to get me through things. I was counting on the worldly things to get me into a happier place. The same worldly things that are more in line with the works of the Devil himself, rather than my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. My wife would kill me for saying this, but if I lost everything, the house, cars, furniture, whatever… yes it would hurt, but they are all replaceable. I know that God would show us how to make it through it. I used to worry about those things, the possessions that I have in the world. Clothes, things that I know are replaceable. Again, things are just things. People are what really matter. I cannot replace my wife, my kids, my family, or my friends. Well, depending on your stance, you might say you can replace your friends, but that is a conversation for another time.
How do I know this to be true? How do I know that possessions are nothing more than just objects? I have lived in one room hotel style dorms. I have lived out of my car. I have lived in tents. I have lived in houses with no room to call my own. I have lived in apartments. When I have been caught up in what I own, I have had nothing, or it was taken away from me slowly and painfully. When I have been smart enough to give my thanks to God, I have had no problems, no matter what happens. My life story is living proof of the struggle to keep the worldly possessions from possessing me. I am living proof of the Gospel and it’s power. I believe with all my heart, that my home was taken from me today, I would be fine, and I would land in a better spot than I am today, and not because of just me taking on the task of rebuilding. No, by no means at all. I would only be in a better spot, because I would be able to let God lead the way, and trusting that everything will be fine in the end.