Cultivating A Mindset Of Abundance Over Scarcity
Have you ever wondered why certain things happen to other people but not you? Have you ever been put into a situation with others where you felt the need to be the absolute best? Or maybe you have felt like your options were limited, and if that’s the case, you always seem to end up with the short straw. Well sister, let me just say - I hear you! There were plenty of times where I have felt these feelings and it is not only damaging to the soul and your perspective on life, but also to the understanding of who God really is and the abundance He has for us.
From a very young age, I was very involved with all things related to the performing arts. I went to dance classes before I even started school and took part in competitions from very early on. I was a part of numerous productions, broadway shows, dance performances, fundraisers and music recitals. If there was anything connected with music and performance in my small hometown, you could bet that I was a part of it! I even started my own dance classes in high school, which then led me to become a part-time dance teacher. With all these performance-based influences in my life, you can imagine that I have a little bit of a competitive streak (okay, maybe more than a little).
We can probably all agree that from time to time, a little healthy competition can be fun, but when our competitive spirit distracts us and becomes our main focus then it becomes dangerous. Comparing myself to others and their situations was a thing that often brought me down. Because of this, there have been many situations where I have felt like my best wasn’t enough at certain times - or that feeling of jealousy had crept in when things weren’t happening for me but for others. This was the point where I needed to really pull back, and check myself!
We live in a broken world filled with negative influences that impact us to be self-centered. But such mindsets conflict the Christlike principals and we can begin to have a more inward perspective of “life is all about us.” This also leads us to embrace a mentality of scarcity.
Scarcity thinkers believe that there is only so much for us in this life. When they see others receiving things in their life that they had been wishing for, they then think there is now less for them. However, this is not in line with how God wants us to understand the circumstances in our life. Scarcity in our thinking moves us away from how God wants to act in our lives. For us Christians, it is important to know the value of others and their achievements and to be able to celebrate their blessings with them.
Romans 12 addresses the need for us to “love in action.” By this response, we are then able to know the importance of sharing success with others around us. Verse 10 states, “Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves.” (Romans 12:10) In times where others seem to be succeeding we are called to be supportive and happy for them, even when we may feel like things aren’t going the way we would wish to in our own lives. We must remember that God is also there for us too, and though our timing may be different, we are to rejoice in the current work that he is doing in us at the present time. For God is not limited. He is the God of abundance.
In order for us to move away from such thinking, we need to learn how to be abundant thinkers instead. This approach to life is important for us to grasp when living a life knowing who God is and the glory He has in store for us. When we practice this shift of thinking, we are able to see the path in front of us that is full of possibilities and not limitations. We then can focus more on what we do have in life, and not what we don’t.
As abundant thinkers, we are able to collaborate with others, share their recognition and celebrate in their success, without feeling less than them in our own situation. This reflects the idea of the functioning body of Christ and the importance of empowering one another. We all have a part to play, and when others succeed, we all succeed together! Look at it from the perspective that we are no better than one another and are all equally valuable to God, each with a specific and important function that makes up the body of Christ (Romans 12:4-5). We are called together as one to reflect His love into the world, and it’s important that we believe we have a purposeful part to play. We are a community of God, therefore, we are to love and support one another through those times of success and joy. Stanley Grenz in book Theology for the Community of God states:
As we live in fellowship, we bring honor to the one who is himself the divine community of love. As the example of Christ indicates, true community requires that its participants relate to each other with humble servanthood motivated by love.
I can understand that in times where life doesn’t seem to be going in the direction you had planned, it can be easy to fall into the trap of feeling like God has forgotten about you. When people around you seem to be succeeding while you’re losing, it can be difficult to pull yourself out of that hole of scarcity mindset. However, this is not the case and God has not overlooked you! Ecclesiastes 3:1 says, “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens.” We must remember that our lives are full of seasons and that in each season, specific things will happen, according to God's timing. God’s purpose is to use us, teach us, mold us into the best possible version of ourselves in order for us to reflect Christlike love into the broken world around us. Each person is on a different journey, and we mustn't let our faith be weakened by scarcity mindset during these seasons where we may feel a little overlooked. That is not the case!
Celebrate and share the joy with those around you who are succeeding. Rejoice in the fact that God is at work in the lives of those you see doing well. Trust that God’s timing is always perfect and that you, my dear sister in Christ, have not been forgotten. Soon enough, others will be celebrating with you. Your cup is not half empty, but half full. Focus on what is now, and see all that you already have and have accomplished. Life is a journey and each moment is one that was meant to happen. When you embrace the mindset of abundance, you will open up to possibilities and opportunities for yourself that you may not have believed through having a scarcity mentality. God has so much for you. Just wait!
Are you currently embracing the abundance mentality?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jacinda has travelled internationally spreading the word of God with her performing arts. She has a continual passion to share hope into a world of hurt and darkness, and through her story of struggle and redemption, prays that others will also come to know Gods amazing love. Jacinda was the founder of the online faith publication 'Hearts of Gold Magazine' and now currently runs the blog The Contented Life - dedicated to all things relating to motherhood. She has a Bachelor in Theology, Diploma in Christian Studies, and a Certificate in Performing Arts. She is now a full-time stay at home mum to a beautiful little boy, currently residing in a small town called Thames, located in the beautiful coromandel of New Zealand.