We had to quickly address something with my daughter when she started interacting with other kids.
It was that famous screaming of the word “Mine” which was always accompanied by ripping, tugging, pulling, or stealing something from someone else.
And frankly it was rarely justified. Usually that situation happens when the toy in question is someone else’s at the time.
I of course never did this as a child.
There is some value to this as we grow in our relationship with God, much of it was revealed to me by a dear friend’s project during college. More on that in a moment…
When we use the word “mine” we are saying something huge. We are saying that we are the sole owner, possessor, and user of a particular item or resource. It is uniquely ours and totally under our control to give or retain. But Scripture offers us a poetic thought on this:
The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it,
the world, and all who live in it;
for he founded it on the seas
and established it on the waters. (Ps. 24:1)
So, where does this put the word “mine”? Can we honestly, with our consciences bared before God, say “This is mine”?
I think we can, but we have to learn to use the word differently. It is “mine” because I am a caretaker of it – I’m holding on to it for someone else. It’s God’s. Not mine.
He made it.
It began, was carefully designed, and put into play in this world by the very Word of His mouth.
I do not control it’s destiny, and if He wants it back then I let it go. Loose grip.
So, my dear friend and a college buddy decided that they would take a shot at a huge experiment. They decided that they would refrain for one day from using the word “Mine.” They would eliminate it from conversation, and they would make every effort to remove it from their minds in reference to the resources they had.
It was, in a word, brutal. They realized how often that language is used and how often it colors interactions.
Can you take the challenge? Can you see yourself as a steward only? What value would this give to your “stuff”? How does the meaning of the word “enough” change when we realize what we currently have is God’s property anyway?
Over this coming week, I challenge you to take one day and eliminate “mine” from your vocabulary. At the same time, pray God would teach you about the things that you’ve been given by Him. Let Him remind you what it means to steward your marriage, your family, your money, your job, your influence, your opportunities…
Comment here and let us know how the experiment goes.