Temptation is different for everyone, but everyone is tempted. These past few days I have been tempted by the lottery that climbed to $1.5 billion dollars. I was so tempted that I tried to figure out when and where I would buy just one ticket without my husband or children knowing. I thought about what I would do with the money if I was the sole winner—would I move? Would I upgrade my camper? Would I travel in First Class to Europe? I wouldn’t have to work anymore—I can just enjoy life.
Then I thought about how my husband would react if I won—he would be very disappointed with me, and the church would think I was a hypocrite. I know they wouldn’t accept any lottery money from me, but I would feel compelled to give money to some kind of charity so I’d try to find a few just to ease my guilt.
As I put more thought into what the $1 ticket might bring (I don’t play the lottery so I’m assuming the tickets are a dollar), I thought about the life I already have. I wouldn’t want to move—I like where I am, I love my old camper—I personalized it and it feels like it’s a part of me, and I like to find bargain travels.
If I gave money to my children so that they can buy better cars and better homes then what have I taught them? I wouldn’t have taught them that hard work brings self-satisfaction, and that paying off student debt, a car loan, or the mortgage brings a sense of accomplishment.
I then thought about the other things that would result from a lottery win—people trying to kidnap my children and grandchildren for ransom, people trying to kidnap me to extort money, etc.
I recalled the words I had read on a friend’s Facebook page recently—“Am I not enough?” Is God really enough for me? Wouldn’t He give me the desires of my heart and meet my needs? He has never left me hungry, and we’ve always had enough money to pay our bills. Do I really want to forsake God for the lottery? Some might say that God could use the lottery to bless someone, but that’s just a way to justify it.
So I’ve come full circle. I was tempted to buy one lottery ticket, but after much thought I’ve decided to be content with what I have and to trust God for all my needs. Plus, I enjoy my job of interacting with students and trying to bring them closer to God (also, I think I would be really bored after a while of doing nothing).
I am now honestly afraid of winning the lottery because of the unknown road that it would take me. If you’re tempted to buy a lottery ticket—don’t. Pray harder and trust God more!