Daily Inspiration

August 24, 2016

Giving and Receiving

Freely have you received, freely give.

~ Matthew 10:1

Feeling happy and successful is mostly a matter of being grateful for what you have, and being able to do something that you enjoy, something you feel makes a difference to someone. Whenever you see polls on how happy people are, it always seems to be the people in hard-hitting, ambitious jobs that are most miserable. It might be partly a matter of stress or just reflect the nature of people who go into various occupations, but I don’t think so, because I’ve been both places.

Eighteen years ago, I walked away from a successful law practice. I was so “stressed and depressed” that I no longer cared about the money I was giving up, because I just knew that there was something better out there; and I didn’t find it — instead, Christ found me.

I have been lucky to have enough money set aside to be comfortable, so that I didn’t need any earned income to get along and have been able to devote so much time to Daily Prayer. But I found peace and satisfaction in late middle age, way beyond my young dreams of self-glory and riches.

When I tell people what I do, they assume I make my living from Daily Prayer. Atheists sometimes simply can’t grasp that I do it as a “ministry” or “calling” rather than a job. Even Christians sometimes find it hard to believe I don’t make any money from it. But being able to operate without paying salaries has given me enormous freedom to serve only one Master. I do not have to worry about keeping donors satisfied, because Daily Prayer could operate without donations: All donations go either to advertising the site and thus helping people find this resource, or else are distributed to direct Christian charities in time of crisis. Note: Since I first wrote this, I have had to hire several outside consultants on a contract basis, which is fairly expensive. I just do not have the time and/or energy to maintain and update all the code myself. But so far the income has been plenty to get this done.)

May all of you be blessed as I have been. I can only be a partial witness, because I have kept enough to have a very nice air-conditioned residence, a fairly nice car, etc. I didn’t move down the socio-economic scale; I only abandoned certain goals and stopped trying to move higher. But even that comparatively small sacrifice has made for so much more contentment and fulfillment in my life. It is a gift beyond value.

Lord, let me always know that the rewards of this world are illusory, and fulfillment comes only from serving You. Amen.

~ Mason Barge
Editor, Daily Prayer

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