Materialism- [the small pox of today]

MaterialismIt’s hard for me to look at a Range Rover and not want one. Their lines are smooth, they look Uber comfortable, and I  feel like I can take on a mountain with it and win. The other morning a Range Rover cut me off on my way to a meeting with a good buddy of mine. I felt everything inside of me tense up. Maybe that was because I was running 10 minutes late to my meeting or maybe it was because he had something that I wanted. It was hunter green, and it was new. The windows were tinted out, and the rims were classy. The only thing that my car and his car have in common is the color of the paint. My rims are not so classy, my windows are not so tinted, and I most certainly could not take on a mountain and win.

Welcome to my internal struggle with materialism. Materialism is the virus that grows inside of you convincing your mind that you need more and more and more.  Materialism not only affects your mind, It affects your eyes too.  They begin looking around at the things that you already have and it causes you to see them as old and out dated.  It’s like a set of contact lenses that magnifies every ding, imperfection, tear, or sign that your stuff hasen’t been unwrapped from their cellophane covering in a long time.  

I’m pretty convinced that materialism has been fed to us by the mass market like small pox blankets were to the Native American’s.  The more we watch and believe the commercials, the more we itch with the need to buy the latest and the greatest.  Be careful my friends!  You don’t need to drive what turns you on.  You need to drive what gets you there.  There is a big difference between need and want.  We get those two things mixed up very easily.  That’s part of the game of the materialism virus- it makes it harder to keep your head on straight.  

Richard Foster writes about the materialism virus.  He says this,

This psychosis permeates even our mythology.  The modern hero is the poor boy who purposefully becomes rich rather than the rich boy who voluntarily becomes poor.  Covetousness we call ambition.  Hoarding we call prudence.  Greed we call industry.

It is time to set possessions in their proper place.  It is time to find joy in the abundant gifts that God has given us.  After all Jesus said in Luke 12:15, “Take heed, and beware of all covetousness; for a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”  The writer of Hebrews says, “Keep your life free from the love of money, and be content with what you have; for he has said, ‘I will never fail you nor forsake you'” (Heb. 13:5)

I’m praying that God shows me that it is more about the people around me than the possessions in my home.  I bet I’m not alone in this struggle… Where are you at with it? 

~Peter

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