Finding a Meaning Beyond Money
By the time Dan Arnold was 33, he thought he had it made. After building up a $50 million dollar gas station and convenience store business from scratch in less than 10 years, he sold it for more cash than he though he’d ever be able to spend. But it didn’t take long before his new life of leisure forced him to ask some serious questions about his ultimate purpose.
“I was in the position where everybody wants to be, which is enough money to do whatever you wanted to do and no responsibility,” says Dan. “And you know something? I felt terrible.”
Dan’s quest for meaning was accelerated when his wife gave birth to twin daughters, one of which immediately encountered serious health problems. As she teetered on the brink of life and death, Dan cried out to God to heal her. Dan didn’t really know God at the time. He didn’t even go to church, but he had heard about God from others. Miraculously, God answered Dan’s prayer, and his daughter was healed.
When Dan went home from the hospital, he pulled out the Bible his father had given him and decided to finally give it a read. “Because God had saved my daughter’s life, I told him I would read his book,” Dan says. In fact, Dan did even better than his word. He read through the New Testament three times in a row. Following that, he decided to become a Christian.
Dan’s new faith immediately brought changes into his life, particularly concerning his struggle for meaning. Prior to becoming a Christian, he was motivated by fear of poverty and failure. For Dan, money was a way of protecting himself against these fears. But the more he grew in his faith, the more Dan started to give his money away rather than hoard it. As Dan observed how God multiplied his gifts and used them to change people’s lives, he had an epiphany. “I realized if I made more money, I could give more away.”
Armed with this new realization, Dan came out of his self-imposed early retirement and got back into the gas station and convenience store business. Today, his company, Road Ranger LLC, operates 25 stores that generate $200 million in sales annually. Six new stores are currently under construction, and a new store opens every two months.
For Dan, the secret to his success is quite simple. “Before, I trusted in myself. Now I trust in God.” As Dan looks back on his life, he can see how God’s hand was plainly guiding him even before he was a Christian. “Now that I’m a Christian, I can see the fulfillment of all that he was trying to attain in me.”
Are you searching for meaning in your life? Ask Jesus to show you his purpose for your life. If you don’t know Jesus, we encourage you to pray the following:
Lord Jesus, I want to know You personally. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sins. I open the door of my life and receive You as my Savior and Lord. Thank You for forgiving my sins and giving me eternal life. Take control of my life. Make me be the person You want me to be.