How many wouldn’t love to win the Lottery? If you asked the average person, the answer would be a resounding YES! It has become a national pastime buying weekly tickets, especially a few times of the year when the grand prize reaches amounts that garner national attention.
Most of the winners begin with great aspirations when they win a prize of that sort, becoming instant multi-millionaires. But looking at the lives of many of those people today, years after they were awarded that grand prize, we frequently see ruined lives: stories of divorces, family members suing one another, and suicides are not uncommon. Even with the greatest of expectations, lack of financial maturity and planning lead many away from what they thought was a dream come true.
Among the billions of people on earth today, we have been given a precious spiritual gift. The gift of God’s Spirit is rare and priceless, and one that can and does change our lives for the better. But without proper spiritual guidance and planning, God’s Spirit within us can disappear from our grasp. And squandering His Spirit can lead to a much greater ruin than squandering money, much worse than those whose lives were shattered from lost fortunes.
We are told in Proverbs 11:14: “Where there is no counsel, the people fall; But in the multitude of counselors there is safety.” Foremost, God’s Word should give us daily counsel. The Ministry and our brethren, secondly, can help to guide our paths.
With these counselors the “dream come true” that has been given to us can become a reality. But we can’t cash the check just yet!
In Revelation 3:18, 21, we read: “I counsel you to buy from Me gold refined in the fire, that you may be rich; and white garments, that you may be clothed, that the shame of your nakedness may not be revealed; and anoint your eyes with eye salve, that you may see… To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne.”
Unlike the winners of the Lottery, our gift is despised by the world. Christ was slandered and killed because of His uncompromising willingness to be led by God’s Spirit within Him, and likewise, we will be slandered and hated as well. But we must continue to overcome, continue to strive for that “payout” that is awaiting us. And we will only achieve it if we allow God’s righteous counsel to open our eyes, guiding us away from that which harms and towards our cherished reward.