When I say self-sufficiency you probably think of being able to finance your life or provide food for yourself and those you are responsible of. Maybe you think of being free of debt. You actually own what you have. All this is true and right.
How about mental self-sufficiency? How about social? What does it mean to be mentally and socially self-sufficient? It is obvious that these have a great impact on how self-sufficient you are when it comes to material things.
To begin with, I want to quote a very well known passage from the Bible. Sermon on the Mount is a wonderful section in the New Testament; very rich in wisdom. Christ teaches in the very beginning:
Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost his savour, wherewith shall it be salted? it is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out, and to be trodden under foot of men.
Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.
Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.Matthew 5:13-16 (King James Version)
In essence Christ is telling us to be spiritually, socially and mentally self-sufficient. He tells us to be active, not passive. He tells us to be contributors, not just consumers.
It is easy to live a life in the light of someone else. It is easy to just feed on the light others produce. It is easy to walk forward when you have someone in front of you showing the way.
Then comes a day when the Light you have used to get by dies. All those years your Light has been there for you looking after you. Now it is gone. Instead of just one losing the way, there is now two. One of them is You.
Light will get tired. Light may take a wrong step. Light might become a victim of life. Light is a vulnerable mortal. Light is just a human being.
What do you do then? Are you prepared? You must take the torch and be a Light yourself.
You must be self-sufficient.
Being mentally self-sufficient means that you are able to increase your knowledge and understanding on your own. It means that you are not satisfied with what you know now. You want to learn more and you are ready and willing to make the effort to find out. You want the data become your data. You don't want to borrow someone else's data. Men and women of God are interested of personal knowledge and understanding.
Being socially self-sufficient means that your behavior, opinions and actions are not dependant on your company. It means you know who you are. You also want to be the uplifting influence in your environment. You don't need a certain person to be with you all the time from the moment you open your eyes until you open them again. It also means that you are able to tie new friendships; real friends, not trophies.
This has many things in it and I could keep on writing the list but I trust you get the point. When you are immaterially self-sufficient you become a light for the people around you.
My intention in writing this was to remind you, myself and all of us of one thing. Don't plan to live your life in the light of another vulnerable mortal human being. You MUST work towards being able to stand by yourself on your own two feet. This because the day when your Light becomes too weak to support you both might not be too far away and you must be able to support yourself and lift your Light.
Godspeed, my friends!