You know, between 1970 and 1999, in this nation, the average person, their income, when adjusted for inflation, has gone up 16 percent; but, divorce has tripled. Teen suicide has tripled. Depression is an epidemic. We have a great depression, but it has little to do with our money. It’s a poverty of soul. Medication, counseling, suicide, discouragement, despair.
When will you be happy? What will it take? What will it take? Every one of us has something that we are anticipating once we achieve or once we experience or once we accomplish or once we obtain, then we’ll be happy, satisfied, joyous people. You can just fill in the blank. I’ll be happy when – blank.
And my question to you is this. Do you really think when you fill in that blank you’ll be a happy, satisfied, joyous person? Do you really think that will happen? Because I would submit this to you. If you look back in the course of your life, five years ago, ten years ago, fifteen years ago, however old you might be, that, at some point, you thought, “As soon as I obtain, achieve, experience or accomplish blank, I’ll be happy and satisfied.” And you have labored diligently from that point forward to achieve those things and upon achieving them, you’re still not all that satisfied and you’re still not all that happy. So, what we do, then, is we create another list of things that we’re going to pursue and going to chase. And we do this until we die.
And a great philosopher, Peter Kreeft, basically says that what this is, life is a wild goose chase with no goose.
A commentator says it great. He says that “Every one of us walks around the earth with a can of peaches and Jesus is the only one with a can opener.”
And one of my favorite philosophers, Blaise Pascal, he has this great statement. He says that, “Many of us live in the past, reflecting on a season that we have already been through; either regretting the things that we should have done, reminiscing about the things we shouldn’t have done; or we live in the future, planning, anticipating and expecting that some day, things will be good and I will be happy and I will have a good time.” And what he says is, is if we live in the past or we live in the future, we never live because we always miss the present.
Wealth is not just eating good food, but enjoying the food you eat. Wealth is not just drinking good drink, it’s enjoying whatever it is that you drink, even if that’s just water. Wealth is not having a lot of stuff, it’s enjoying whatever you have. Wealth is having memories of the times that God enabled you to be happy. And wealth is having people you love to be happy with and to do good for. That makes you wealthy.