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Living on a Cliff

Kingdom of God Priorities Stewardship

Source: "Young adults are getting used to living on a financial cliff" by By J.J. McCorvey and Brian Cheung, published NBC News, 2/18/24

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Kikeh Anthony | Date Posted: 2024-02-29

Scripture: Matthew 6:33 ; Matthew 17:24

Author: Kikeh Anthony


Young adults are getting used to living on a financial cliff. As of February 2024, NBC News reports:

The net worth of Americans ages 18-39 surged by 80% from the start of 2019 to the third quarter of last year, Federal Reserve Bank of New York research shows, blowing past the rates for older generations.

But much of the gains are from investments that climbed alongside stock markets and largely don’t translate into disposable income. And while many millennials (ages 28-43, according to Pew Research) — and plenty of their Gen Z near-peers (12-27) — are pulling in bigger paychecks, they’re still pumping that cash into pricier everyday expenses, from essentials like rent to luxuries like leisure travel. …

That mentality isn’t exclusive to young people. A “revenge spending” bonanza driven by FOMO, stimulus checks and built-up savings helped power the post-pandemic recovery, and consumer spending has kept chugging above expectations despite higher prices.

The financial peril this FOMO ("fear of missing out) mentality is akin to building your house on the edge of a cliff. It might have be a beautiful view of the ocean, but, in time, wind, rain, and erosion will see that big, beautiful home sliding down into the crashing waves below.


Life on the edge — each day full of dazzling views, deeply inspiring, exciting, without regard for the potential failure. Each day, the cliff's edge creeps ever closer, until your house — your life — lays a pile of rubble on the ocean floor.

They had their "best life" for a moment, but the edge’s nearness drew upon them faster than they ever expected.

We are not to use this life to craft and spend our time, money and resources on earthly experiences that bring joy and pleasure in the here and now — big houses, trendy travel, lavish lifestyles. We don’t have to live our best life now. We have eternity! 

Let's not invest in and spend on the things that will all too soon drop off the edge of a cliff. Our calling is to invest in the kingdom to come! 

"But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you" (Matthew 6:33, NIV).

"For the kingdom of God is not a matter of eating and drinking but of righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit" (Romans 14:17, NIV).

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock" (Matthew 17:24-25, NIV).


Compartmentalized Christianity

Christlikeness Priorities Calling

Source: "Don’t Compartmentalize Your Christianity" by Paul Tripp, posted, 1-29-20, retrieved 6/4/23

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2023-06-04

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 5:20 ; Matthew 6:24

Author: Paul Tripp


"The next time you’re standing in your kitchen, bedroom, or at your desk, I want you to look at drawers. Yes, drawers. ...

"Sadly, many people who call themselves Christians live functionally compartmentalized lives. Whether they realize it or not, they have divided their lives neatly into two drawers: real life and spiritual life.

"The real life drawer is the one they dig into frequently and are most comfortable with. It contains all the stuff of everyday life, like their job, physical health, friends and family, leisure, money, possessions, and daily routine.

"This drawer dominates their thinking and their doing. It’s where they expend most of their emotional and physical energy, and where most dreams will be realized or dashed. ...

"Then they have a second drawer—the spiritual life drawer. All the “God” stuff goes here. It’s the drawer for Sunday worship, small group, tithes and offerings, short-term missions trips, and the evangelistic conversations with neighbors or extended family members.

"Yes, they believe in Jesus, his forgiveness, and the eternity to come, but these beliefs don’t have a radical impact on the way they think about themselves and life in general. Their faith is an aspect of their life, but not something that shapes everything in their life ... "


"Ask yourself: on any given day, what most influences the way that I think about myself and my life? What is the driving factor for the majority of what I think, say, and do?

"The biblical narrative and worldview only has one drawer—it’s called the gospel in everyday life. Everything goes in that drawer! Scripture asserts that you were bought with a price (the life and death of Jesus), so you don’t belong to you anymore. (Actually, because of creation, you never did belong to you!)

"God has a radical, single-drawer purpose for your life. The best word for that purpose is ambassador (see 2 Corinthians 5:20). The only thing an ambassador does is represent the ruler who sent them—every day, all the time, in everything you do.

"Therefore, your purpose in life is to make the invisible presence of Jesus visible in the lives of others. You are the look on Christ’s face. You are the tone of his voice. You are the touch of his hands. You are the physical representative of his grace.

"This is your mission in every situation, location, and relationship of your life—to make the grace of the invisible King visible. ..."

"We are therefore Christ’s ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ’s behalf: Be reconciled to God" (2 Corinthians 5:20, NIV).

“No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money" (Matthew 6:24, ESV).

Some Things Just Aren't Worth Chasing After

Priorities Balance Idolatry

Source: "California woman falls head first into vault toilet while trying to retrieve phone, requires two fire departments to pull her out," by Harriet Rigby, published, retrieved 4/22/22

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2022-05-31

Scripture: Luke 12:34 ; Exodus 20:3

Author: Illustration Exchange


Have you noticed how important our phones have become to all of us. We tend to joke that we feel naked if we don’t have them on our person at all times. Some of us have become so dependent on them that we’re willing to go to great lengths (and falls!) to not be separated from them.

Such was the case when a woman recently dropped her phone in an outhouse latrine at the Olympic National Forest in Washington state. 

First, she tried reaching in for it. Then she tried using her dog’s leash to fish it out. When that failed, she dismantled the seat, tried using the leash as a lifeline, and leaned into the hole to dig deeper. And that’s when it happened …

The entire rigging gave way and she plunged head first into the cesspool of waste below. Thankfully, somehow, she found her phone in all that muck and managed to phone 911 for help. But it took two different fire departments considerable time to retrieve her. 

The Fire Department medics cautioned her of the health risks of her exposure and contamination, but she declined treatment, opting to just go home in humiliation.


It seems that that which we love, we pursue, but often to our peril — phones, technology, money, even other people. 

We must stop and ask ourselves, “Is it worth it?” Will pursuit of this priority bring me health and happiness, or danger and destruction?

Life is a balancing act. Phones can be good things, helpful things. Diving into sewage to save one, not so much.

“For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Luke 12:34, ESV).

“You shall have no other gods before me” (Exodus 20:3, ESV).

Where Your Treasure Is

Stewardship Priorities Sanctification

Contributed By: Kikeh Anthony | Date Posted: 2021-07-24

Scripture: Matthew 6:21 ; Acts 14:15

Author: Kikeh Anthony - Application by I.E.

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Influence Priorities Legacy

Contributed By: James Miller | Date Posted: 2018-05-26

Scripture: 1 Peter 4:10

Author: Dennis Hevesi

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When Are You Going To Die?

Gratitude Mortality Priorities

Contributed By: Charles Krieg | Date Posted: 2017-10-12

Scripture: Psalms 90:12

Author: Charles Krieg

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A Lesson In Stacking Priorities

Priorities Love for God Success

Contributed By: Jason Sommerfeldt | Date Posted: 2017-10-07

Scripture: Matthew 22:37 ; Matthew 6:33

Author: Jason Sommerfeldt

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Getting Your Digital Life In Order

Eternal Life Worldly Mindset Priorities

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-05-30

Scripture: Matthew 6:33

Author: Illustration Exchange

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What Happens When You Double A Penny Everyday For 30 Days?

Faithfulness Priorities Reward

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-05-03

Scripture: Matthew 6:20

Author: Illustration Exchange

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Joy Ride

Great Commission Priorities Church Health/Growth

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-09-06

Scripture: Matthew 28:19 ; 1 Corinthians 9:2

Author: Illustration Exchange

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