Five Reasons I DON'T Want to win the Lottery
That much power in the hands of a twenty one year old? I wouldn’t know what to do with it. I wouldn’t know what I should do with it. With no experience and very little knowledge, how could I know where to put my money, who I should give to or what causes I should be supporting. Can you imagine how stressful trying to do the right thing with all that money would be? What if I blew all of it? How foolish would I be if I got a free million bucks and then a few years later had nothing?
Winning the Lottery would provide me with a lot of money that I did nothing to earn. It would require no sacrifice and no hard work. I wouldn’t have deserved the money, I wouldn’t have earned it. I just would have gotten lucky. Knowing this, and looking around at the millions of people who have so much less despite working so hard, how could I stand myself? Furthermore, I could not satiate this guilt with giving because how would I know who to give to and how much? Should I give a lot to my best friend and not so much to someone I hardly know. Or donate it all to a charity? These would be difficult questions, questions that I don’t have the life experience to answer.
That much money could easily cause me to lose sight of what is really important in life. Having so much power and freedom would almost certainly make me less dependent on God, and I am not spiritually mature enough to handle that temptation of independence. Not only that, but in having so much security, my fear of uncertainty would surely rise to previously unimagined heights. With the ability to acquire every pleasure I might want on earth, I may be much less likely to want to give up earth. This again is a temptation I am not prepared for. Jesus says:
“Whoever tries to keep his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life will preserve it.” ~Luke 17:33
It is already difficult enough to give up my life. I don’t need any more difficulty!
Having everything I need provided for me would make it far more difficult to get up and make something of my life. Without the requirement of earning a living, my own powers of self motivation may not be enough to drive me to continue to better myself. I may be tempted to stop trying in my classes, knowing that the only penalty if I slack off is a little less knowledge, rather than my very livelihood. Furthermore, I may be tempted to stop doing the work God intends me to do. Let’s say God’s wants me to become a writer, a teacher, a lawyer, or a counselor. Without anyone depending on my work to live, it may prove difficult to motivate myself through the difficult challenges that lie along the path to those careers. I have enough trouble motivating myself already. Taking away the most driving of those motivations would only weaken my resolve.
They say power corrupts. That fear I mentioned earlier of losing the money I will have gained might easily turn into an insatiable desire for more money, more power, and more influence. Once tasting the fruit of wealth I may only desire it more and more, like Edmund and the White Witch’s “Turkish Delight” in C.S. Lewis’ “The Lion the Witch and the Wardrobe”.
““It is dull…. To drink without eating”, said the Queen presently. “What would you like best to eat?” “Turkish Delight, please, your Magesty,” said Edmund. The Queen let another drop fall from her bottle onto the snow, and instantly there appeared a round box, tied with green silk ribbon, which when opened, turned out to contain several pounds of the best Turkish Delight. Each piece was sweet and light to the very center and Edmund had never tasted anything more delicious… at first Edmund tried to remember that it is rude to speak with one’s mouth full, but soon he forgot about this and thought only of trying to shovel down as much Turkish Delight as he could, and the more he ate the more he wanted to eat… At last the Turkish Delight was all finished and Edmund was looking very hard at the empty box and wishing that she would ask him whether he would like some more. Probably the queen knew quite well what he was thining; for she knew, though Edmund did not, that this was enchanted Turkish Delight and that anyone who had once tasted it would want more and more of it, and would even, if they were allowed, go on eating it till they killed themselves (Lewis, The Lion The Whitch and the Wardrobe, HarperCollins 1978, 36 and 37)."
I do not want money to become a sort of Turkish Delight. I would prefer not to test and find out whether I am mature enough to resist the temptation of greed.
Winning the lottery would be quite the thrill and I will not lie, if someone cut me a check for a million bucks I’d probably take it. But I’m not going to seek out the chance to win it. I urge you, next time you want to buy a lottery ticket. Go beyond just realizing that you are more likely to get struck by lightning and attacked by sharks in the same day than you are to win. Ask yourself if you are truly ready for the massive responsibility that having that much money would entail. I know I’m not!