Asking the Wrong Question
There’s a question we need to stop asking. It’s not a question we ask consciously most of the time, but it invades our thinking and starts to decay the fabric of our lives. It is a question scarcity, stagnation, and hopelessness. The question is, “Is it necessary?” It usually comes out of my kids’ mouths as “Do I have to?!” Consider this question applied to different contexts.
- Is it necessary to leave my house? (Especially if you work from home!)
- Is it necessary that I play with my kids?
- Is it necessary to consume anything but bread and water?
- Is it necessary to talk to my spouse?
- Is it necessary to read (or play games, go for a hike, watch a movie, etc.)?
- Is it necessary to pray?
In each of these cases the answer could certainly be “no”. It is not necessary to do any of these things. However, if you choose to stay in your house, ignore your family, refrain from good food and drink forever, avoid recreation, and distance yourself from God your life will be much less than it could be. You will be alive, but you will not be living.
“Is it necessary?” is a worthless question.
We will be much better off when we begin asking “Is it beneficial?”
This is a question of hope, abundance, joy, and growth. There is little doubt that investing in relationships, recreation, and study are beneficial. Not everything is beneficial, and this question can help us to root things out of our lives that are detrimental to ourselves and others. It will also lead us to growth and fulfillment. A full and joyful life is full of all kinds of things that are not necessary but are beneficial.