Thursday, April 14, 2011

Contentment

I am an unpretentious person. I shop at Walmart. I shave with Barbasol (original scent) shaving cream. I use disposable razors with the shaving cream. I drive a Honda Civic.

And I want a 1956 Chevrolet Corvette. Or a '57. A '58 with its quad lights would be nice. I think the C1 series is some of the most beautiful cars ever produced.

Not that I expect to own one, not on a pastor's salary. And not that I need one, either. It's just a wish. A wish I can easily live without. Sadly, many people think their lives are empty without stuff. But it sets them up for failure:
He who loves money will not be satisfied with money, nor he who loves wealth with his income; this also is vanity. (Ecclesiastes 5:10 ESV)
The Apostle Paul gives us the New Testament's definition of contentment while languishing in prison:
Now there is great gain in godliness with contentment, for we brought nothing into the world, and we cannot take anything out of the world. But if we have food and clothing, with these we will be content. (1 Timothy 6:6-8 ESV)
Food and clothes. Check. Therefore be content. Doesn't exactly sound like the warped American idea of contentment, does it? Our society is pretty shallow. Paul continues:
But those who desire to be rich fall into temptation, into a snare, into many senseless and harmful desires that plunge people into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all kinds of evils. It is through this craving that some have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many pangs. (1 Timothy 6:9-10 ESV)
The lust for cash and all of the trappings of that cash will ruin a man, even to the damnation of his soul. Living for stuff is so soul-sucking. And sad to see. And wrong.