Materialism

Our Greatest Opportunity

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If in pursuit of making our kids happy we rob them of our presence in their lives, we’ve missed our greatest opportunity. What they need is relationship—not with a screen, a gadget, or a piece of plastic, but with the people most important in their lives.

 

Photo Credit: Free photo: Christmas, Star, Winter, Family – Free Image on …

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Life is More

Roy's Funeral

We are more, so much more than flesh. And life is more, so much more than our temporary pursuits. When I stare at the skeletons in the neighborhood yards, I’m reminded again and again. I don’t want to live for short-lived gratification. I want my life to count for something that won’t rot in a casket with my bones.

 

Source: Skeletons

Photo Credit: Funeral | Casket | Don LaVange …www.flickr.com

Fleeting

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It’s easy to get sucked in to the monotonous routine of everyday life, forgetting how fleeting it all is. It’s tempting to invest time and resources on the needs and desires of my flesh, neglecting to consider it’s just a temporary house. How many hours have I spent worrying about how I look or how others perceive my external appearance, when this flesh is destined for the grave? There are far more important ways to invest my limited time.

 

Source: Skeletons

Photo Credit:Crossing over to Autumn Forest | Indy Kethdy | Flickr

The Things We’ve Left Behind

blog_rearviewmirrorI admit I was embarrassed to have my friend visit my small apartment. She lived with her family in a large house on the nicer side of town. We’d just moved after years of outreach work in the inner city. Much of our resources had gone to that work, and more recently to the adoption of our two kids. We didn’t (and still don’t) have the material abundance of the typical American family. So I wondered what my friend would think.

In the course of our conversation, she mentioned how lonely she was. Her big house was too often empty, her husband working long hours to cover the mortgage. The kids spent much of their time alone in their rooms, engrossed in whatever new technological gadget excess had afforded them. They had so much, but had lost much more in the process.

When she left, I sat on the couch and looked around our humble dwelling place…grateful. Living with less has afforded us so much more than money can buy. Living simply was a choice we made years ago, not only so we could give more, but that we could enjoy the short time we have together. Having less has enabled us to invest quality time with each other, and with our kids.

As I drive by the large yet empty homes that fill our streets, I can’t help but wonder…what have we left behind in search of the American dream? We think bigger and more equals life. Yet we’ve lost much life in the process. It seems the more we acquire materially, the more we lose relationally on account of the time it takes to maintain our possessions.

Sometimes I’m tempted to think my life is less because we have less. I have to remind myself to remember all we’ve gained in the process. And should we ever be granted abundance, I pray I never come to the point of forgetting what’s truly important.

“Two things I ask of you, LORD; do not refuse me before I die: Keep falsehood and lies far from me; give me neither poverty nor riches, but give me only my daily bread. Otherwise, I may have too much and disown you and say, ‘Who is the LORD?’ Or I may become poor and steal, and so dishonor the name of my God.” (Proverbs 30:7-9)

 

Photo Credit: Free photo: Rear-View Mirror, Mirror, Car – Free Image on Pixabay …

Abundance

Nature Winter Bird Wildlife Frost Cardinal Snow

Sometimes I’m tempted to think my life is less because we have less. I have to remind myself to remember all we’ve gained in the process. Living with less has afforded us more than money can buy. And should we ever be granted abundance, I pray I never come to the point of forgetting what’s truly important.

 

Photo Credit: Free photo Nature Winter Bird Wildlife Frost Cardinal Snow – Max Pixel

‘Twas the Day of Thanksgiving

Blog_BlackFriday‘twas the day of Thanksgiving
and all though the towns
a heart that was grateful
could not be found

the tables were filled
and the people were stuffed
but still they complained
that it wasn’t enough

surrounded by more
than they ever could need
they prepared for Black Friday
to placate their greed

on a day meant for family and memories
instead
they had visions of shopping malls
inside their heads

though it used to be peaceful
they now were consumed
with buying new things
for which there was no room

when they could have been talking
and laughing with friends
they scoured the papers
for sales without end

instead of enjoying
the warm firelight
they froze as they camped
in the stores’ lots all night

and once the doors opened
they pushed and they shoved
and trampled each other
hearts empty of love

they spent and they fought
from midnight ‘til day
for things that in time
they’d just throw away

all blessings forgotten—
thanksgiving erased
now that Black Friday
has taken its place

(originally posted on the Nightlight Blog)

Beyond our Fading Flesh

blog_fashionBeneath our fashionable clothes and beyond our fading flesh, a mere skeleton holds us together. And when we’re gone, that skeleton is all that will be left of our bodies. So why do we invest so much time in things that will only fade away?

 

Source: Skeletons

Photo Credit: Free stock photos of fashion · Pexels