Britain's youngest Euromillions winner wants to sue Lotto for ruining her life with big win. Jane Park, who was only 17 when she scooped £1million with her first-ever ticket, is considering legal action against lottery bosses for negligence in allowing someone so young to buy a ticket.
Britain's youngest EuroMillions winner says her stupendous windfall has ruined her life. “I thought it would make it ten times better but it’s made it ten times worse. I wish I had no money most days. I say to myself, ‘My life would be so much easier if I hadn’t won.’ People look at me and think, ‘I wish I had her lifestyle, I wish I had her money.’ But they don’t realise the extent of my stress. I have material things but apart from that my life is empty. What is my purpose in life?”
In our passage today, Jesus says: “What good is it to gain the whole world, yet forfeit, or lose touch with your soul”
The setting of this passage is really significant. It takes place outside the city of Caesarea. In other words, it takes place outside a city built in honour of Caesar.
Caesar was metaphorically speaking one who had gained the whole world. He was ruler of the whole of the civilised world as they knew it. He was the richest and most powerful man of the day.
In this passage, we are seeing a contrast between Caesar, the ruler of the world, and Jesus, God's anointed one, who comes to usher in God's Kingdom.
What the writer of Mark's Gospel is suggesting is that the way of Christ is very different from the way of Caesar. The way of Caesar is the way of trying to amass all the wealth and power that the world can give. The way Christ, God's anointed, is the way of being willing to give one's life away for the sake of God and for the sake of others.
In the Old Testament, before crossing over into the promised land, Joshua poses a question to the people of Israel. "Choose this day who you will serve".
In our passage from the gospel of Mark, we are faced with a similar choice. Will we choose the way of trying to gain the whole world, and in so doing lose touch with the essence of who we are, lose touch with a deep sense of meaning and purpose. Or will we be willing to walk the way of Christ, the way of being willing to give ourselves away in acts of loving service to God and others and in doing so, to gain something that money can't buy.
How easily we get trapped. Returning to the opening story, despite being desperately unhappy, living a meaningless existence and despite regretting that she had ever won the lottery, when asked if she would be willing to give the money away, Jane Park said “no!”
Jesus says we can gain the whole world and forfeit, or lose touch with our soul… lose touch with a deep sense of meaning and purpose:
What are the moments in your life where you have felt most deeply in touch with your own soul; with a deep sense of inner connectedness with something much bigger than you.
What are the experiences where you have felt most connected to your own true meaning and purpose?
What is one small thing you could do this week to help you connect more deeply with your inner being and a deeper sense of meaning and purpose in your life?