When was the last time you ate the last cookie? When was the last time you decided to be greedy with your time and love?
As women most of us are taught at a very young age not to be greedy. In fact, what I see more often than not, is the thought that the mother who has nothing to call her own, the woman who gives her all to those she loves is cast in this saint like form. The glow of the halo can be almost blinding, especially to the woman who wears it.
Greed, by definition, means a selfish desire for significantly more than you need.
I find it fascinating that as children and adults in church we are often taught that greed is wrong and sinful. But as hard as we try we are greedy by nature. We are always in want for more, more love, more time, and even more attention. People pray for their wants, and that is greedy. Even the belief of salvation is greedy. I can’t tell you how many times I have turned on the TV and seen a pastor asking for money. They offer to pray for your health, finances, your want is their prayer and in return you pay them money. Even the prosperity pastor is profiting off our greed. It only takes a quick look at our churches to tell us greed pays. So if greed pays why are we taught it is wrong? Why do we speak of the evils but not of the gains that greed can get us?
When we think about greed it is usually in context of money. But there are so many other ways we can be greedy. I don’t believe greed is wrong. But I do believe that it is greed without love, generosity, and compassion is dangerous. I believe we all have a little greed inside us and the better question would be what values and virtues do you have that live alongside of greed?
I can hear some of you sighing and saying well I am not greedy. Okay, great so you will be turning down your next raise right? After all, you have all your needs meet at this current salary so there is no need to make more? See greed is inherent in all of us. I think it is our blinders that make greed dangerous.
I want to talk about the woman who doesn’t even know her wants and needs because for so long she has lived in a place of fear and duty that to even name a need could cause physical pain. This is where I found myself three years ago. I had no idea what I needed or wanted. It felt wrong to want anything more than I had. After all I had a house, a car, a husband, and three beautiful children I didn’t want to be greedy. But there were things deep down a primal desire of wants and needs. I wanted time alone, I wanted new clothes, I wanted to travel, I wanted more of my husband’s time and attention. I wanted more so that I could give more away. I felt as if all the giving had left me empty.
The problem with denying your wants out of fear of being greedy is that you stop dreaming. You excel at surviving but you aren’t thriving. You base your life and value on what you offer instead of who you are. You are then shocked and hurt when others only see you for what you can do rather than who you are. You are a soul with wants and needs.
My son is an avid athlete; he loves all things sports. He excels at the sports he does. I have often had people come up to me and say,” oh, you are Eli’s mom, he is such a natural athlete.” I smile,yes he is naturally good but Eli is GREEDY! He is greedy with his time and he is greedy with his abilities. He spends hours and hours practicing for whatever sport he is playing. For every hour of team practice there is at least 3 hours of him practicing on his own. So his excellence when it comes to athletics is directly related to the fact that he is greedy with his time and with his body. He knows his body can do better if he demands more of it and that requires him to be greedy with his time.
Here are the areas in my life I am greedy:
I am insatiable when it comes to my husband. I could live a thousand years and never kiss him enough or spend enough time with him. I am greedy with his time. Is this wrong? Or does it drive me to a deeper level of connection.
I have a list of priorities and I am very greedy with them. Before I allow anyone to make a withdrawal from any of those columns there has to be a surplus. If someone is wanting my time I have to love the idea or I won’t do it. I have one very short life and I am going to be greedy. I want to spend this life fulfilling my calling. I am also incredibly generous. See being greedy doesn’t have to be all or nothing. Find where in your life you could be a little greedier. The strangest thing happens when you embrace both greed and virtue of generosity you find the greedier you are the more generous you are able to be. Greed tends to live in our shadow lives, it is time to bring it out and shine your light on it. How can it serve you? Where is it harming you? YOU are the creator of your wants, needs and desires and there is nothing wrong with wanting more and better as long as you are are living your values.
I think it is so important for women, especially mothers, to embrace greed. To look into their lives and dream of more, not from a place of scarcity but from a place of abundance. I encourage you this week to see where in your life you could use a little greed. Is it your time? Is it your love? How can you embrace greed alongside your other virtues? Remember that oxygen mask needs to be put on you first before you can help anyone else.
If you tired of playing small and think it is time to embrace a little greed and invest in yourself, schedule your FREE 30-minute session.