There has been a little piece of scripture that’s been resonating with me lately. I’ve been turning it around in my head and comparing it to how I’ve lived my life. Here it is. From the Bible, Romans 8:5—
5 For those who live according to the flesh, set their minds on things of the flesh. For those who live according to the Spirit, set their minds on things of the Spirit.
Okay. So, what that means to me is, for example, in the first 20+ years of my working life, I have continually strove to achieve higher and higher heights in the amount of money I earn and in the level of work I produce. After all, we’re growth-seeking beings, right?
Well, that expansion has led to an expansion of deeper responsibilities, more responsibilities, less time to myself, less time for my family, more time given to clients, more time given to employers.
After a while, you begin to live according to your obligations and not to your priorities, right?
Well, that’s not very fun. You may get to a place (or at least I did) where I was working 60-70 hours/week. Not optimum, right? In doing that, you burn yourself out. You get tired. You get exhausted. You get strung out emotionally, physically, mentally, energetically.
So “living according to the flesh,” —even just driving into the office today, I noticed billboard after billboard after billboard that talked about this casino, or about that show, or buying a new home, or the latest restaurant. We are inundated with worldly messaging. You turn on a TV, and most of what you’ll find are stories about adults behaving badly to other adults. You go to the newsstand, and it’s more about who slept with who, so-and-so showing up in a bikini, how to get buff.
And it’s all very temporary.
When I was building my web design “empire,” I knew I had been put on the planet to create webpages. I actually felt pity for a friend of mine who didn’t have the same level of clarity. He didn’t know why he was here. He had no sense of a direction.
Finally—after numerous coffee shop consultations—he opted to go back to school. This was good, I told him. I said, “Listen, at least you’re doing something, at least you’re moving.” He did end up going back to school, and he did end up finding a career but I don’t think it’s fulfilling him there either.
You know what I’m saying? We move on from thing to thing to thing, shiny object to shiny object, and we wonder why we’re never fulfilled.
Well, as I’ve heard recently—and this resonates with me—we are naturally expanding. We’re naturally seeking. We’re naturally looking for something more, but when we try to fill it with things of the flesh (i.e., things of the world as in anything that can rust away; anything that can be here today and gone tomorrow, or gone next week, or gone next year, or gone next decade, or gone next century) —if we’re putting our time, effort, and focus into that, then it’s never going to be enough.
You will never arrive at a place where you are satiated.
Have you yet? I haven’t.
I haven’t gotten to the place in my work where I have come to the conclusion, “I’ve arrived. This is the height of my work. I have done all that I can do. This is as good as it gets.”
I haven’t gotten to that.
In fact, I have gone through times in my life where I have built up, poured hours, poured time, poured thousands of dollars into developing businesses and gotten them off the ground, and then gotten to a place where I just don’t care.
“I’m done. This doesn’t fulfill me,” I think.
The money is coming in, it’s nice, but it doesn’t fulfill me. The fact that I built something that’s now working on its own doesn’t really fulfill me.
So you get to a place where you throw up your hands and you say, “Well, I don’t understand.”
In my case, it’s been because I have been chasing things of the flesh: pleasures, money, entertainment. Sex, drugs, and rock ‘n’ roll. You name it—it’s all just distraction.
I think right now, at this point in my life, I have maybe finally gotten a clue about this and now it’s all about the spiritual pursuit. I’ve begun letting go of some of my worldly businesses and worldly concerns. They’re starting to fall away, starting to just kind of flake away like when you get mud on yourself and it dries up, and you just flake it off.
That’s what’s kind of going on in my business life.
I’ve spent over 20 years building up web clientele, and had a client base of hundreds—hundreds—of accounts.
Now, I’m just going through a place where I’m helping those folks move on to other competitors, some to strategic partners, and others just elsewhere. By the way, it’s a really alien feeling to spend 10 to 20 years building on something and then to begin dismantling it because it never really got you to the place where you wanted to be.
But did I really know where I was going to begin with?
That’s another question for a different talk.
So, I would encourage you to think about where it is you’re going right now. Figure out if your ladder is even on the right wall. I bet it’s not.
Now, some of you may already be on the right wall. You might be deep into your spiritual development, and you might be looking to close the gap between you and your Creator like I am.
I got to tell you, from there—from that place—I’ve begun to feel peace. I’ve begun to feel like I have a clue.
Now, my mind could make me a fool tomorrow. I could wake up and realize, “No, this isn’t it either,” but I don’t think that’s the case. I think that in living according to the Spirit and setting my mind on things of the Spirit, I think there’s more peace in that path.
Alright, folks, I hope this chat has been helpful for you. Let me know. Go ahead and subscribe to the channel. We’ll keep the conversation going. But let me know down in the comments (if you made it this far); have you experienced this? Have you run across this? Do you relate?