I was not one of the 15 million people that played the largest Mega Millions in history, but that didn't stop me from thinking about what I would do with the money.
*Cue the dream sequence music*
The first thing I would do with my jackpot is pay off all my debt in pennies and set aside money for my family to receive the best medical care. Then all of my friends' children would receive funds for school. They will never have to know Sallie Mae. I'd tithe to my favorite churches and then I would set up a family trust or foundation. Then I'd start a venture capital organization and invest in companies and startups that empower women of color, vulnerable communities, and STEM. I'd fix Chicago's potholes with whatever's left.
Though it's wishful thinking, it made me ponder how easy it is to take a chance in hopes of hitting it big. According to The Washington Post, the odds of winning the top prize were 1 in 302,575,350 about the same chances you have to die from a shark attack. You're more likely to die from a falling coconut than win the lottery. Still millions flocked to buy tickets.
I have to wonder why its easier to gamble knowing the unlikelihood of it happening is so high when we hardly gamble on ourselves. We have the opportunity to chance our lives instantly everyday.
Make the choice
If you were one of the many Americans that purchased a ticket, you made a choice. Those who didn't, made a choice. Happiness is a choice, it takes intention. You must actively surround yourself with people that make you happy. You must make choices that prioritize your joy. And most importantly, you must create that space that balances both.
Faith it til you make it
Wishing and hoping are unreliable. Wanting your ticket to have the winning numbers requires nothing of you. Faith requires your presence in order for you to walk alongside your goals and desires. In my walk with God, I choose to pursue my anointing even when I don't know where it will lead me. I do know that I showing up for myself gives me power to change my own life.
What sets our faith and hope apart is intention. Faith requires you to show up despite your fears and doubts and decide to do it anyway. Whatever is on the other side of fear is a consequence of your bravery.
Faith is intentional and demands courage. And while sometimes blind, it asks you to make a choice. Choose yourself.
If your numbers were called, how soon would you claim your ticket? Just like the winning ticket, you have to claim what it is you want.
Claim your victories, your promise, and the grit in between.
You are the jackpot, put the same energy you put into picking numbers and wishful thinking into your goals. There's a saying that you regret a 100% of the chances you don't take, but learn from you learn from each opportunity you take to be and do better.