When my mom died in 2018 at age 95, Regina and I took her two dogs as we felt there was no alternative. She named them Tom and Jo. The result is we have had three dogs as our dog Osa was with us when Tom and Jo joined our family. Indeed we are living in a dog menagerie. Yes they are a lot of work. Yes our dog budget is large. No it is not easy for one person to take all three on a walk. And yes we love having all three with us. They bring us not only companionship but delight and often laughter. Jo weighs 8 pounds. Tom 18 pounds. And Osa, 85 pounds. Their size disparities lead to entertaining antics and roughhousing.
A few days ago Osa was in my lap, well as much of her body as she could put in my lap. Jo jumped up on top of Osa. Tom attempted the same move. They all wanted love and attention at the same time and it became apparent to me that each would have preferred to have me to themselves. It was as if they felt I did not have enough love for all three of them. I understood something they apparently did not. I have more than enough love and affection for all of them, yes even at the same time.
Years ago Stephen Covey published his book, The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People. I still think it is a great book with very helpful insights. Within the book he writes about two kinds of thinking from which we can approach life. One is abundance thinking. The other is scarcity thinking.
When we have a scarcity view of looking at things, he says we believe there is only so much of anything to go around in life. We live as if life were a pie and if someone else gets a big piece, it means less for me. The lens of scarcity says it is not wise to share things, share recognition, share power, share profit, or be happy for the success of others. A scarcity mindset says there can only be one number one. It is clear to me that so many people live from a place of fear that whatever it is in life, there is not enough for everyone.
Conversely, Mr. Covey states that when we live from a perspective of abundance, we live believing there is enough of whatever it is for everyone. That there is plenty out there. An abundance mindset means we are open to creativity, limitless possibilities, and sharing recognition, profits, money, whatever it is that we have.
While not always easy, I believe our walk with Jesus invites us to living life assuming there is enough for everyone, whether it be profits, recognition, encouragement, space, applause, and love itself. I can’t find in scripture anywhere where living from a perspective of scarcity is upheld, valued, or encouraged by God. Without a doubt, if God’s kingdom was fully recognized and in place on earth, we would be living in a very different place and in vastly different ways. Indeed we would see that there is indeed enough for everyone as God intends.
In the meantime, I am going to work on helping our three dogs know I have enough love for all three. It may take some time for them to trust this, but I will try. More importantly, I feel we are all called by God to figure out how to move more and more each day into living from a place where we know, understand and embrace that when it is all said and done, there is more than enough for us all.