Recently, I started to binge watch Shark Tank. I suppose I was intrigued by the amount of money that these sharks would give to business owners and claim their portion. Or, maybe it was the way the business owners’ stories would capture a piece of my heart. Many of them shared what drove them to create their business and push through the odds to be where they are today. As most shows go, some would get deals and others wouldn’t. In order to be deemed successful on Shark Tank, the owner/s would need to get at least one shark to invest in their work.
Given the example before, that type of investment particularly deals with money. However, when we talk about the word invest, it doesn’t necessarily always have to equate to finances. When I think about the word invest, I think about how we are called to invest in many areas and assets of our lives. This could range from our family to a current project we’re attempting to complete. There’s an endless list to what we could invest in, but the important looming question begins to be whether or not whether or not our investment will be worth it in the long run. I’ve compiled a list of five areas of our lives that we can reflect and think about.
- Invest in your relationship with God.
- In Luke 5:16, we see, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed” (NIV). Through the life of Jesus, we are able to see His heart and how He invested in his relationship with His father. He didn’t let anything stand in the way of taking time with God, not even his own tiredness, his to-do list, nada, nothing. It makes me think of the countless times I’ve neglected to invest in my own relationship with God. I have often chosen a T.V. show, hanging out with friends, finishing up tasks on my to-do list, etc. over spending quality time with God. It says something about my heart. And, it’s not a really good thing. What are areas in our lives that could afford to see a little less of us, so we can see more of God?
- Invest in your church.
- As I grew up, the only places I was extremely familiar with included church, school, and home. These were the 3 places you could find me. The majority of the weekend was given to church because of Friday night Bible study, Saturday’s choir practice, and Sunday’s service and Sunday school.
- The lessons and ways I was able to grow and serve in my home church molded me into the person I am today.
- The 3 days of VBS, years spent in Sunday School, and relationships formed with the youth set my foundation as a believer. It served as a component of completely changing the trajectory of my life.
- No matter your age- I think there’s a place and way to invest in your church. Look for and identify ways you can serve. Is it through assisting as a Sunday School teacher? Does it mean helping set up the coffee for morning service? The list is endless, but there’s a place. It’s simply waiting to be found.
- Invest in your relationship with your family.
- In the last 9 years, I’ve had the chance to live at home again just once. Even as I write that number nine, it’s kinda crazy. It was from 2014-2015. Although it was a rough year because I had to relearn and adjust myself to living at home again, it was a year I cherish dearly. Since I haven’t been home, I’ve had to celebrate some milestones from afar, cheer them on from a distance, and miss out on some important memories. Missed birthdays, Father & Mother’s days take a toll on you once you sit back and really think about it all. That’s why I encourage you to take the time to invest in your family.
- As this summer continues, I am praying and hoping that I am able to do so whether that is during my two week break or other pockets of time I can catch a flight home. It isn’t easy. By no means. The takeaway? Family matters.
- Invest in your relationship with your friends.
- “Sometimes your circle decreases in size, but increases in value.”
- This resonates me so much as I’ve found it to be true through the years. The older I get, the more loudly this speaks. Friendships are extremely important as they play a part in shaping and molding you. Find and invest in friendships that prompt you to think deeply about Jesus, ask you the hard questions, and share some of your best and worst moments of life.
- As I think about some of my dear friends, they have been the same ones to stay even when life was really hard. Their encouragement to turn to Jesus was and remains unmerited.
- Invest in your life’s work.
- As a person who has had 3 jobs in the past five years for a variety of reasons, I am learning to really live and breathe this truth. 2 years in Houston as a 4th grade teacher, 1 year in Garland as a 3rd grade teacher, and 2 years in Houston as a 2nd grade teacher definitely teaches you a lot about yourself and the work that is at hand.
- If there’s one overall message I’ve learned, I have come to the understanding that our life’s work isn’t always easy. In fact, I know each job comes with its own difficulty. People always commend me for being a teacher, but honestly, each job should be commended.
- Along with this, one of the parts of investing in our life’s work includes investing in the people at our work.
- Do we know the people who clean our office/classroom? Do we take the time to engage with our co-workers and their lives? Have we stopped to take a listen to their story? Have we taken the time to share about Jesus & the Gospel story?
Our turn: What area of our life is God calling us to pay a bit more attention to? Where do we need to invest our love, time, energy, etc. ?