How To Have An Abundant Life

How much abundance are you letting in your life? How much do you want to let in?

I used to look down on people with money, nice homes and cars that didn't break down every Thursday.

They were "those" people. I assumed they didn't care as much about others because they had so much. I somehow turned "blessed are the poor" into "damned are the rich." I somehow heard "money is the root of all evil" even though that isn't what the Bible said. 

In time I discovered that my limited thinking, not my boss or job, was limiting me. My own thinking was limiting me from having an abundant life and from being even more generous to others. Once I changed my thinking about money, more of it flowed into my life, and into the lives of others, because I was no longer blocking the flow.

One of my favorite lines in the Gospel quotes Jesus as saying, I have come that you might have life, and have it more abundantly. 

Abundance.

I met a Catholic nun who taught me a lesson about abundance that I've never forgotten. Sister Jordan ran the Center of Hope for the poor in Ravenna, my home town. One day someone donated a diamond ring. Instead of selling it to get money to buy more cans of green beans, Sister Jordan placed that gorgeous ring on the finger of a poor woman who came to the center.

"Even the poor deserve abundance," Sister Jordan told me. 

We are all worthy of abundance. We were created worthy. We don't have to do anything to deserve it. 

That's what I wish for all of you. An abundant life. Full of magic and wonder and joy.

How do you attract it? Three things help me:

1. An abundance journal:

I keep an abundance journal. Every day I write down the abundance I give and receive from the world. I write down small things, like putting a quarter in the parking meter for someone, praising a stranger, secretly paying for lunch for a police officer, senior citizen or tired mom. Writing daily about abundance has sharpened my eyes and heart to receive more of it.

I write down all the gifts life gives me: a sunny day (which in Cleveland can be a rare treasure), sticky hugs from my grandbabies, a lovely email from a reader. Most of it is small stuff, but what you pay attention to grows in your life.

2. A magnifying glass.

When you magnify the good, it gets bigger. I remind myself that my soul is one big magnifying glass. What do I want to focus it on? When I put my magnifying glass on a problem, it gets bigger. When I put it on the solution, the solution gets bigger. "My soul doth magnify the Lord," Mary said in the Bible. What is your soul magnifying?

3. A rampage of thank yous. 

I recently met a woman who doesn't just say thank you once, she says it over and over and over, like a song. "Thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you, thank you," she chants softly.

At first it felt weird to hear her fountain of gratitude, but her shower of gratitude flowed over me all day. I felt blessed by her all day long, so I started doing it. It feels great.

I let loose with a stream of thank yous often, especially after I've caught myself complaining or criticizing or pouting. When I catch myself, I turn on the Thank You switch, and shift into gratitude, and let the stream pour forth.  

Every day I remind myself: My abundance benefits everyone and everyone's abundance benefits me. I have an endless supply of abundance from a wealthy God who loves me.

So do you.