Scarcity lies to our hearts on a daily basis. It tells us that what we have, and even what we could have, is never enough. It stands on the false presumption that to have more in the way of tangible things and in the way of power, control, and influence, is what we ought to have.
When we are afraid of not having, we live reactionary lives rooted in fear.
Fear that who we are isn’t enough (for approval? acceptance?). But, somehow we can be enough if only we could do better. So we do more and try harder.
Fear that our time, money, knowledge, property, relationships, followers, and abilities are not enough. So we do whatever it takes to gather more.
Fear that if someone else receives a good thing, there are less good things for us. So we compare and justify how we deserve the thing more, or give up because we deserve it less. We might stew in anger because we didn’t get what “they” got.
For any of us who have fought the lies of scarcity, we know what it’s like to fight to get more of what we think we need because we’re afraid we won’t have it when we need it most.
In other words, self-reliance.
What a stressful, anxious way to live.
These fears perpetuate scarcity because without fulfillment in the things of Christ, we will never find that we have enough.
Our scarcity thoughts keep us stuck because we rely heavily on ourselves and we miss out on noticing the provisions of God. We miss out on seeing the power of God at work in our lives. Like how he can turn a scary, unknown future into one which sees our faith grow and our fears released. Even if things don’t turn out how we wish they would.
Fears rooted in scarcity keep us from experiencing the abundant blessings of contentment and security.
Yet, in attempts to live the Christian life, we might try to put on contentment by telling ourselves this is the way we should feel. In doing so, we’re not likely to actually feel contented because we haven’t experienced the power of trusting for God’s provision over our own, nor the comfort of the Holy Spirit in the areas where our hearts tremble.
God’s way is a path of abundant living.
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly. ~ John 10:10
This kind of abundant life is often misunderstood by applying the meaning of abundance to things which are of this world. Jesus words here are centered on a kind of life found as we follow Him. The good Shepherd.
Abundant living is full of God’s presence, leadership, protection, and provision. It is also full of the kind of peace which passes understanding, a deep and abiding joy, and incredible freedom. As followers of Christ we are given this kind of abundance when we follow Jesus.
Remember how sin entered this world? How the serpent tempted with these words?
But the serpent said to the woman, "You will not surely die. For God knows that when you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil. ~ Genesis 3:4-5
The enemy spoke lies of scarcity in the very beginning. Essentially, his deception led them to believe God was holding out on them. They were in a perfect garden where no death occurred, and they walked with the presence of God daily. Still, scarcity told them it wasn’t enough.
Whatever we are looking for, which is not already given and made available by God, will never be enough.
Whatever He gives, may we receive and may it be enough.
How do we fight the lies and resulting fears of scarcity? How do we choose to live an abundant life instead?
We can choose gratitude each and every day, even when everything around us feels terribly wrong and painful. We can choose gratitude because we are given the power of God to live through whatever obstacles we face and the presence of the Holy Spirit to guide us from surviving to thriving in every situation.
Gratitude reminds our hearts of what we have. Gratitude fights the fears of not having enough by saying that what we have is good.
When God created the earth, he ended each day saying, “It is good.” When light and dark were separated, it was good. When the earth was formed, it was good. When living creatures first populated, it was good. When man was given life from the dirt, it was good.
If good is good enough for God, may God’s goodness be enough for us.