One of the best gifts God ever gave me was getting to a point where I had less to lose. I am not trying to compete with Job. His losses were epic. When God vacuumed nearly every distraction from his life, he was able to declare, “I know that my redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth” (Job 19:25).
Life happened. My wife and I could measure the effects. We had less income for ourselves and still had to spend money on other people. We moved to a smaller house in a poorer community, drove cars well into six digits on the odometer, and tuned in antenna TV because it was free. But as we had less to lose, we became more grateful for what we had.
Getting to the point of having less to lose is no picnic. It is very stressful. I would never recommend you start throwing things overboard unless you have a hut in a tropical paradise. But when God starts peeling away the excess in your life, pay close attention to what remains.
The journey led us to agree on a stewardship practice. Nothing new comes into our house unless something old goes out. If we get a new sweater, Goodwill gets an old one. If we update a light fixture, the Habitat ReStore gets the old one. Someone else can use them. And we don’t want to squander the gift of having less to lose.