Eric Speir

Thrive In Your Faith and Family

6 Ways To Tell If You Are Making A Living Or Making A Life

In our culture today it doesn’t take long to look around and notice that many people are not satisfied. Even with all of the technology and education that is available people still find themselves struggling to find purpose and fulfillment in life.

Time And Money

With all the talk that is of this upcoming generation one thing that we can glean from them is their missional approach to life. For many of them they believe that life is much more than just about them. How can someone tell if they are just making a living or actually making a life?

There are a few ways that I believe we can tell the difference between the two. I think it comes down to “who” we are living for. Do we consistently live for ourselves or for others?

You can tell you are just making a living if …

  • You spend most of your time thinking about yourself or your needs.
  • You only invest your time in people who can help you.
  • You are content with being average and only do what you’re paid to do.
  • You complain or resent it when someone asks you to give to a church or local charity.
  • You spend too much time talking about yourself and your accomplishments.
  • You use people as stepping stones to get to where you want to be.

You can tell you are making a life if…

  • You spend time thinking about what you can do to help someone else.
  • You invest your time in someone who can’t pay you back.
  • You do your best to help the organization, even if it means a sacrifice on your part.
  • You look for ways to give to a local church or charity.
  • You look for ways to encourage and compliment others for their work.
  • You look for ways to pull others up, instead of pushing them down.

The only way to change this is to be honest with ourselves. It’s never too late to change who we are or what we do. Are you making a living or making a life? Hint: It’s not about us.

Question: How are you trying to make a life for those around you?


About Eric

I'm a pastor, writer and serial encourager. I like to help people to grow in their relationship with God. I live outside of Atlanta, GA. I've written a book, Stubborn Faith: 30 Day Devotional Guide For New Growth. It's available for download on Amazon. Feel free to follow me on Twitter at @ericspeir

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9 Replies

  1. Eric, I compared myself to your lists. I think for the most part I am making a life. But I know that I still can do more. This past year, my heart has really been burning to do more missions trips. To do more, think more, care for, others more than myself. Great post.

    1. That’s great Juan! I take at least one missions trip a year and it’s always good for me. It gets me out of my comfort zone and forces me to get my eyes and thoughts off of me.

  2. artiedavis

    Good list Eric, great Q’s.

    1. Thanks Artie! Good questions help us arrive at the best answers.

  3. I’d add one. If you see the word as a zero-sum-game – that is someone else has to lose for you to win, then you are trying to make a living. If you realize that others can succeed without taking anything away from you, you are making a life. Enjoyed the read tonight…thanks!

    1. That’s a great one Tom! Making a life should be a win-win for everyone. It should be about pulling others up instead of pulling them down.

  4. This is a great list. I began to believe that I am making a life when I realized I was giving without expecting anything back. Not credit, recognition or reward.

    1. It definitely takes work and maturity to get there. I think that is the struggle of our human flesh versus our spirit.

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