Thursday, December 11, 2014

What REALLY matters? - John Ortberg

Here is a speech by John Ortberg. John is an evangelical Christian author, speaker, and senior pastor of Menlo Park Presbyterian Church in Menlo Park, California, USA. Ortberg has published a number of books such as, 'When the Game is Over, It All Goes Back in the Box', 'If You Want to Walk on Water, You've Got to Get Out of the Boat' and 'The Life You've Always Wanted'.

The video is six and a half minutes in length, but you can find a full transcript below if you prefer reading.

"...I first learned it from my grandmother. Now, my grandmother was a wonderful person; she taught me how to play the game Monopoly. She understood that the name of the game was to acquire. She would accumulate everything she could and eventually she became the master of the board.

And then, she would always say the same thing to me; she'd look at me and she'd say, "One day, you'll learn to play the game."

One summer I played Monopoly almost everyday, all day long. In that summer I learned to play the game. I came to understand the only way to win is to make a total commitment to acquisition. I came to understand that money and possessions - that's the way you keep score. And, by the end of that summer, I was more ruthless than my grandmother. I was ready to bend the rules if I had to to win that game.

When I sat down with her to play that fall, I took everything she had - I watched her give her last dollar and quit in utter defeat.

And, then she had one more thing to teach me.

Then she said, "Now, it all goes back in the box."

All those houses and hotels, all the railroads and utility companies, all that property and all that wonderful money.

Now, it all goes back in the box.

None of it was really yours. You got all heated up about it for a while. But, it was around a long time before you sat down at the board and it will be here after you're gone.

Players come; players go.

Houses an cars. Titles and clothes. Even your body. Because the fact is, that everything I clutch and consume and hoard is gonna go back in the box and I'm gonna lose it all.

You have to ask yourself, when you finally get the ultimate promotion, when you've made the ultimate purchase, when you buy the ultimate home, when you have stored up financial security and climbed the ladder of success to the highest rung you can possibly climb...and the thrill wears off...and, it will wear off...then what?!

How far do you have to walk down that road before you see where it leads?

Surely, you understand, it'll never be enough.

So, you have to ask yourself the question, 'What matters'?"

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