Scarcity or Abundance Mentality
Lent is a time to keep it simple, to avoid excess. We do in fact have a Christian tradition of giving something up for Lent. So this season seems the perfect time to take a look at how we are affected by our western tendency for excess, for overdoing it. It seems to stem from a mentality of scarcity, the fear of not having enough and/or the fear of others having more. What a stingy way to live! Especially when we recall that Jesus said, “I have come that you might have life, life abundant.” John 10:10.
The scarcity mentality does not serve us well. Richard Rohr, OFM wrote in a recent meditation: “If we begin our day with any notion of scarcity, not-enoughness, victimhood, or ‘I deserve,’ I promise you the day will not be good–for you or for those around you. Nor will God be glorified.”
How then can we live with a mentality of abundance? It is after all our choice – the abundance or the scarcity mentality. We tend to focus on what is missing and take our daily abundance for granted. Let’s begin by reminding ourselves of the abundance we already possess. Perhaps an attitude of gratitude can move us from the mentality of scarcity to the mentality of abundance. If we practice the attitude of gratitude the last thing before we go to sleep or the first thing each morning, our day can start with the notion of abundance. List those things we are so privileged to enjoy: family and friends, good health, our senses, freedom, education, food, shelter, clothing, work, God’s grace and unconditional love. When we take time to reflect, the list is almost endless.
When we live from an abundance mentality, we find we not only have enough for ourselves, we also have enough to share generously. We will also be able to begin our day in abundance and our day is surely to be better for ourselves and those around us. For Lent give up the scarcity mentality and live with the abundance mentality.
Blessings~ Eunice Cheshire