What Are We Accumulating?

Dec 12th 2009

Just ran across this blog post from Mark Batterson, made me think so I decided to pass it on to you.

I have a core conviction. Actually, it’s more than that. It was a word from the Lord. I’ll never forget the Holy Spirit whispering this to me in a pup tent in Awash National Park (Ethiopia) at the end of an unforgettable day that included a game drive. I heard the Still Small Voice loud and clear: “Don’t accumulate possessions. Accumulate experiences.”   That has become a guiding theme in my life.  So here’s my random thought. And I think this is for someone. Don’t just give possessions that will rust and break and end up in a toy box. Give the gift of experience. Not sure how that translates into your context. But it might be worth investing money in an experience versus another possession.

This is a good Christmas word.  If God has blessed you with the means, don’t waste your means on more stuff.  Invest in an experience, invest in a future memory with your family, a son or daughter, your wife, a good friend.  Make a bucket list.

I think this is one of the reasons that I love taking my family on short-term missions trips.  Yes it is about serving.  But if you have ever gone on a mission trip, you have heard multiple times, I received so much more than I gave. I think one of the things we received is an experience the effects of which have the potential to last far longer than the soon to be obselote Xbox 720.

Now you don’t have to go to Myanmar, or Estonia, or Rwanda, or the Dominican Republic for an experience.  Go sledding at Slab Cabin with your son or daughter.  Take a road trip to visit the Holocaust Museum in DC.  Take a train ride to Chicago and back.  Do the local adopt-a-family deal and spend a few hours shopping, wrapping, and praying for a family in our community.  Take some cinnamon rolls to someone in a nursing home.  Ride the gliders at Julian.

And any experience you share — I think it doubles the effect.  Imagine that first Christmas, it was full of amazing experiences.  This Christmas give someone an experience.