Have you ever wished for a way to just zero out your life? Start over again?
Every week, thousands spend millions on a chance to do just that.
Of course a new life doesn’t come cheap. Lots of people are hoping to bankroll that new life with a Lotto win. And to win that Lotto, they are counting on their favorite numbers.
I’m not really that different. I, too, have favorite numbers.
Well, maybe I’m a bit different.
I never actually buy a ticket. I just have favorite numbers.
I’ll tell you what my favorite numbers are, but please don’t tell me if the numbers win. I’d hate to find out that they won without having actually bought the winning ticket.
The winning Chaplain Norris numbers are 25-30-35-40-45-50.
Yup, I know choosing numbers in multiples of five may seem whacky, but according to webmath.com, any series of numbers will give you the same chance of winning — 1 in 10,737,573.
Second to winning the lottery to start a new life, many people hope they can start a new life by choosing the right faith. The problem is that they often choose that faith in much the same way they play the lottery.
Some people think that finding faith is like playing scratchers — by scratching at the deep questions of faith, they hope to come up with a winning faith.
Others think that faith is all about luck, so they seek out the nearest weeping statue and drive hundreds of miles to light a candle. They say a prayer and hope a god in a good mood hears it.
Still others rely on some lucky combination that their grandfather passed along to them. “My granddaddy prayed for my grandmother in that church and she was healed, so I guess it’s a winner.”
Yet, still others rely on the big-spin approach and pick a faith like picking the right card out of newly shuffled deck.
And some play faith the way they play a bluffing poker hand, refusing to let anyone see their cards.
The problem with all these approaches is that the holder of such faith continues to practice the routine of losing, much like those who return each night to the same losing casino. This kind of faith usually ends up discarded in much the same way you discard a Lotto ticket on the oil-slicked driveway of a gas station.
Somehow, I don’t think faith has much to do with winning or losing. I think faith is too important to treat with the glibness with which we often choose our winning numbers. I think faith is more about investing who we are, not about gambling what we have.
I think it’s an investment into searching. I think the searching is about the conversations, the discussions, the questions and the debates that we have in our search. In fact, I think God prefers honest “searchers” or “questioners,” even when they challenge him directly, even when unflattering.
Jesus suggested faith might well be something compared to a mustard seed. A mustard seed is the tiniest of seeds, yet in ratio, grows one of the biggest plants. It starts from the smallest beginnings in the hearts of people and produces not a personal profit, but a powerful and personal transformation.
Well, all this talk about winning the lottery made me research winning lottery numbers. A quick search told me if I had played the Florida lottery on May 24, 2003, my lucky numbers would have matched three of the winning numbers 23-25-30-35-43-53.
Total potential winnings, $5.50. I think faith is a much better investment.