By Alan bailey
More and more our way of life seems to be centred around things. To possess a good house, furniture, clothes, cars and a growing array of consumer items is what life is all about, so it seems. The ever-active world of advertising keeps these alluring goods in front of us. There they are, glittering silverware, plush floor coverings, thrilling sound systems and endless electronic gadgetry.
Then added luxuries like a pool table, a caravan or cabin cruiser, are for some like a tempting bait dangling before their eyes.
Desire rules, OK?
The thinking of many families today seems to be dominated by a hunger to acquire certain goods. It almost becomes an obsession. Working, striving, saving, in order to fulfil desire, but never, it seems, actually feeling satisfied. The heart longs for even more.
The word "covet" is not used much these days. It means to be greedy in our desires, especially in seeing what others have. So we look jealously at neighbours and friends and sit drooling over the array of prizes won by people on TV shows.
The Bible mentions coveting as a sin. The Ten Commandments were given to help people live worthwhile lives. One of these commandments says "You shall not covet."
There is nothing wrong with working toward the possession of material things provided we keep a balance with other factors in our lives. We should not allow desire to possess us. So often people hurt others by their greed; some enslave themselves to gain only a passing fad, putting things before their loved ones. Sadly, many crimes are committed in the pursuit of the possession of things.
Probably ten people out of ten would say that the principle thing they want in life is contentment. Yet the truth is, contentment is not found in things, no matter how good or great they may seem to be. Paul, writing to his friend Timothy, said: Godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into this world and we will take nothing out of it. But if we have food and clothing, we will be content with that.... For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil.
Something that lasts
A change of attitude is needed. We need to see that the best things in life are free. Take for example the gift of God which is eternal life. Think then of forgiveness through the Lord Jesus, His peace in your heart and mind, His love that never changes. Money can't buy these yet they outlast everything else.•