No one can deny that we are richly blessed in this country. We have more than enough to eat. We have access to more entertainment than we can possibly digest. There are more things out there to thrill us than our grandparents could have imagined.
The problem is we’ve turned blessings into ultimate things.
I’m as inclined as anyone to enjoy a good meal. I wish Thanksgiving came every month. Of course, if it did I’d weigh more than an elephant. Food is important in our culture. When we meet friends, it’s usually for lunch or dinner. When we see family from far away, we have a meal to celebrate. Christmas even has us giving food to people we work with and probably care little about.
Times have indeed changed since the Great Depression. Food was hard to come by then and people ate it all because it was questionable when they might get to eat again. This practice carried into later generations and people got bigger.
We have more entertainment at our fingertips then ever. Movies are on TV. They’re at the theater. You can download them to your computer and your portable devices. We live in a culture where the TV is on all the time because we don’t want to miss anything.
All these things can be good in themselves. But they can open the doors to a prison of habits that will kill us and worse, keep us from doing anything significant in the world.
Where did we go wrong?
If you’re a Christian, you can thank God for the bounty you enjoy. The slope you can fall down is to enjoy the stuff more than the Giver who blessed you with it. When you do that you make idols of your blessings.
That will shackle you.
Thank God for what we’ve got. But when your job is gone, and the cupboard is empty, or the doctor tells you that you’ve got cancer, does the stuff seem so comforting then? Will it touch you deep in your soul where your heart cries out for relief?
Only Jesus can give you that kind of assurance. Only Jesus can grant you the contentment you need to make it through poverty or riches and not lose your soul.
Chew on that.
Then go and have a nice dinner and thank God for it.