If I Won The Lottery

UnknownA notification from Yahoo News just popped up on my iPad. The lottery is currently up to $900 million. $900 million! Insane! When the numbers are drawn, someone- or maybe a few someones- will win the millions.

I don’t play the lottery. It always bothers me when I see people who may or may not be able to afford a cheeseburger and large fries standing in line to put most of their paychecks toward a slim chance at lottery luck. Aside from a few bucks on scratcher tickets, I don’t know anyone who has ever won anything through the lottery. But, the payoff is $900 million dollars!! Am I going to purchase a ticket? You bet I am!

One article said that buying a lottery ticket is like waving goodbye to $2.00. I read that the odds are better that I would be hit by an asteroid or give birth to quadruplets. When the amount is a couple million, it doesn’t even enter my mind to kiss those $2.00 goodbye. $900 million, on the other hand, makes me want to tempt fate. One ticket, right? Couldn’t hurt.

What would I do if I won? I won’t even pretend to know how a person would spend that kind of money. I think I’d do the obvious things- pay off our mortgage, get rid of credit card debt and eliminate our kids’ student loans. A new car would be nice- maybe a Jeep. After that, I have no idea! I’ve never had the luxury of living beyond my teacher’s salary. My husband and I both work for a living because we have to work to provide for our family- just like everyone else. It’s beyond my imagination what it would be like to have choices, to live without the thought of what bills have to be paid before any money can be saved or simply spent.

I’m not a person who values stuff. People and relationships and moments are the things that define my life. Stuff is just…well, stuff. We live in a town that was devastated by an EF5 tornado. Living through a natural disaster really magnified that mindset. Many people in our town were left without “stuff” and it didn’t matter. Stuff could be replaced. It was about the people who survived and the people we lost. It was about faith in God and strength in relationships.

If I won the lottery, my life experiences would focus where I shared some of that $900 million. My career as a teacher would put a focus on children and education. My journey in faith would look for places to share the good news. Seeing first hand what happens to a community affected by natural disaster, there would be a search for organizations that do good works in tough times.

They say money can change people. I would hope that’s not true- unless it changes people for the better. I’ll let you know if I get the chance to find out!

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