I sat behind the pew watching the offering basket go around. The room drowned out by the pastors’ voice reiterating ‘be generous’. All I could feel was lint and the small change for the bus ride home. I started to wonder if God thought I was gaining weight and needed the exercise. I knew what was in my pockets but I just had to check again, the same reason I open the fridge every five seconds. But honestly, this was mostly done to look like I had something to give but misplaced it. We have all been there. Not just at church but maybe at a funeral, or a friend just going through a tough patch. We just didn’t have the money, we were as broke a beggar in a third world nation on a Friday. It’s discouraging and makes you feel a bum, useless. It’s crazy that we tend to attach a large part of our self-esteem to an inflation-prone material. A material that is to some peoples’ accounts as rare as a sighting of the Bigfoot or Santa (yes, one of these is real).
The fact is, money is important and plays an essential role in our lives but we shouldn’t get it confused with our intrinsic value. We are not worthless when we have less. Even if we may feel like that. It takes a mental leap but we have to learn to attach value to our other facets: companionship, listening skills, bad dad jokes, smile, and so on. More freely offer these parts of ourselves rather than always falling on the money we never have enough of. From my personal experience, people tend to appreciate these more.
So what’s the point. Realizing that we have other valuable things to offer will help us be more helpful when we don’t have the money to part with. It also allows us to keep our confidence up, be more appreciative of who we are and what we have to offer.
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