Tenet 9. We foster a unique and positive culture of abundance.
Because of our belief in God, we recognize that our Creator's love is bounteous and infinite. When we internalize this understanding, we generate a positive culture of internal abundance that helps us navigate the external world around us, in our social relationships and interactions, as well as in our physical circumstances and surroundings. This internal attitude helps us focus on gratitude and what we have, rather than what we lack.
The concepts of scarcity and abundance, although typically associated with economy, wealth and financial prosperity, can also be applied to our human experience. In many parts of the globe, we find a peculiar phenomenon happening. We find women and families struggling from day to day in extreme economic poverty, yet some are internally thriving and happy due to their abundance mentality. Simultaneously, there are some individuals, families and even entire communities, that despite their economic abundance, suffer with internal scarcity. How are some thriving amidst destitute external conditions? On the other hand, how are those who have so much, feeling lonely or empty inside? An abundance mindset is key to navigating intrapersonal and interpersonal, familial, communal, and global experiences in a more empowered and deliberate way.
The notion that external circumstances or outcomes needn’t have absolute control or complete power over our internal state of being is a tremendously empowering idea, deeply embedded within Big Ocean philosophy. We believe that true power stems from within. This internal power, rooted in faith, allows other virtues to take root. Virtues such as generosity, kindness, and respect will have a contagious effect, and can create the powerful external changes we seek. As this mindset eventually creates external changes, one individual can have influential power for good within her home, her community, and her world (see Big Ocean Model of Powerful Impact).
The internal power of abundance has the power to transform! In understanding and incorporating abundance within our internal (emotional, psychological, and spiritual) frameworks, we can nurture a culture of abundance in a broader way.
So what does the abundance mindset look like in real life? Chances are you have been incorporating this model in your life and you didn’t even realize it! This concept has been working within the lives of many Big Ocean women and is what has brought many of us together from the very beginning. A common element of the women who have been drawn to this organization and movement is their ability to foster hope and optimism as a first response to any life challenge. We see this mindset in action as we prepare a meal for a friend in need. We see this mindset when we nurture additional children in our home. We see this mindset as we volunteer in our community. We see this mindset as we combat anger and malice with patience and respect. We have seen incredible ways everyday women have applied this abundance mindset in their own lives as they have tackled serious global issues head on! Many of our members have volunteered with an organization that rescues young children from sex-trafficking. Together with their families, they have used this mindset to find the courage to dive into some of the toughest and darkest societal issues of our day.
There is enough and to spare. Imagine for a moment an endless supply of water from a glass pitcher, pouring water into your hands. If your hands are so focused on catching the stream of water so you won’t lose it, your hands will naturally close into tight fists, and you will not be able to receive the life-giving water. Now imagine yourself trusting that you will receive enough for your needs. Your hands will naturally open and you will be able to capture enough for you to drink. As the water continuously pours, you ask others to open their hands and drink freely as well. With blessings flowing from an infinite source, closed hands and fists will not be able to draw nourishment and life. Only those with open hands and hearts will be open to receive. We must learn how to live our lives in such an abundant manner, and to invite others to do the same. Truly, there is enough and to spare inasmuch as we show gratitude by giving and sharing.
As a cottage group, write down some words that express scarcity and abundance in two categories. Feel free to write any word that comes to mind, even words or ideas that wouldn't normally be associated with scarcity and abundance.
- In what ways are you abundant with your thoughts and actions?
- In what way are you scarce?
- What are some ways that your abundant thoughts or beliefs have helped shape or influence others?
- In what ways have others influenced you with either abundance or scarcity?
- What are some examples in history where people have changed the world because of their abundance mindset?
- As a woman and/or a mother, how can you adopt some of the abundance characteristics to influence your children, family, and community?
- How do you envision you and your family demonstrating abundance in your community?
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