We live in a world where there’s always something new out. I’m guilty of being in snared by materialism. Materialism is the desire or yearning for more material possessions. It is being preoccupied with material things rather than spiritual riches.
With me being young material things mean a lot. What you have makes you look better, especially to your peers. But what is the bible’s view on matters?
The bible states in 1 John 2:15-16 “15 Do not love either the world or the things in the world.+ If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him;+16 because everything in the world—the desire of the flesh+and the desire of the eyes+ and the showy display of one’s means of life*—does not originate with the Father, but originates with the world.”
I know from experience it is hard to subdue the desire of the eye. Its our natural inclination to see and want things. The bible know this too, for in Prov. 27:20 it uses the eyes of a man as a metaphor for the grave. ” 20 The Grave and the place of destruction* are never satisfied,+Nor are a man’s eyes ever satisfied.” So we are always going to want more.
Materialism is something I battle with on the day to day. Every time I go into the mall with my friends I end up coming out with something I didn’t need or couldn’t even afford. I like to get my nails done and buy expensive weave and clothes to keep me looking nice. I’m always buying make up and accessories because I view these things as needs. Also people compliment me on all these things making me have more of an interest to do them.
Because of this, I work more or rack up credit card debt. I’m seeking material things and not the kingdom first like instructed in Matthew 6:33 “Keep on, then, seeking first the Kingdom and his righteousness, and all these other things will be added to you.”
While trying to maintain loyal to God you have to put him and his kingdom above your desires. I haven’t mastered this yet. I still yearn for things and money. But the bible says, “24No one can slave for two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other,+ or he will stick to the one and despise the other. You cannot slave for God and for Riches.+ ”
The bible warns of slaving for riches in 1 Timothy 6:9, 10 “9 But those who are determined to be rich fall into temptation and a snare+ and many senseless and harmful desires that plunge men into destruction and ruin.+ 10 For the love of money is a root of all sorts of injurious things, and by reaching out for this love some have been led astray from the faith and have stabbed themselves all over with many pains.+“
Something that helped me was telling my job that I couldn’t work on Thursdays and Sundays for those are the nights of my meetings but also the most frequent days that my job works. I decided my worship to Jehovah was more important. I have to stop buying things that make me slave harder for money and instead appreciate all the things I do have. A great way of doing this is making a list of all your blessings so that the things that you don’t have wont seem so important.
Practicing self control will not only make me stronger and less anxious but it will also draw me close to Jehovah. And in return he will bless my efforts and all things that I need will be added to me.