Because of the work that I did, I was sometimes around some of the wealthiest people in our country. It was an absolute blessing to have had the experience because I learned some truths which changed my path. I naively thought that money solves pretty much all problems which wasn't the case. These people who had luxury cars, drivers, mansions, waitstaff, etc., didn't have the lives I thought they led. In most cases their lives were much worse because where there's money, there are people wanting to take it. There are jealous family member and friends which of course negatively impacts relationships. Their lives appeared way more stressful because I guess when you have a bunch of stuff, you become stressed out about losing it. This is why Maggie and I prefer the lean and mean approach to life.
Here are some things the devil leaves off of his sales pitch for obvious reasons:
1) Jesus said it's very difficult to walk the righteous path when shiny things keep leading us astray. He said in so many words that everything loses its luster, which is an acknowledged truth around the world but strangely a lot of people don't demonstrate they believe this by their pursuit of worldly goods. The great feeling we get when we acquire something we really want, usually last about three months for an adult and sometimes a day or two for children. Is it worth it?
2) Having a goal of happiness and coming up with strategies and tactics towards experiencing it more in your life, is true success. We've got one shot at this thing called life. There are millions of examples of people who are defined as "successful," and it's legitimate, but that's because most people believe it is only the achievement of wealth and power which defines success, but it isn't.
3) The last time our economy hit a pretty rough spot with the housing bust, a lot of people reached out for help. But guess what, a lot of those who were struggling and getting ready to lose it all, were people who I thought were rich. What I didn't realize at the time, is that even though their paychecks were hefty, they weren't good with their money. They were living above their means maybe in an effort to impress, I don't know. But what's weird, and were all guilty at different levels, is that pretty much every time they purchased a luxury item, it didn't bring them the joy they hoped and instead of learning a lesson from it, they think the next shiny object will make them happy (i.e. new car, large house, etc.). Like I said, the devil is a great salesman. Did I mention he was a democrat? 😁