All too often I find myself in the checkout line at Michaels or Old Navy, having successfully completed my shopping, only to be met face to face with a beautiful shelf full of amazing stuff I don’t need! My radar instantly goes to the ON mode and I begin looking for that special something I just might need. Now, as if it isn’t bad enough that I am trying to find something I need after I am already done shopping, add in a cute little CLEARANCE sign and watch out, people!! I’m now in full-fledged “I’m gonna find something in this bin if it’s the last thing I do” mode, because, after all, I am a coupon crushing, money saving, deal-of-the-century finding, clearance rack shopping diva!! Or am I?
Recently I was spending time with a friend and discussing our unified love for shopping. That amazing feeling you get when you find that exact piece of clothing you needed to complete the outfit, or the perfect pillows to adorn your living room couch. We shared about our passion for finding a good deal, and talked about the resulting “stuff” we’ve accumulated. Shortly after this encounter I decided to make a conscious decision to take a break from shopping and see what happened. What?! I know, I know, the shopping “Diva” has decided not to shop?? Well, it’s been almost a week, and here is what I’ve discovered in that short amount of time.
- I have way too much stuff.
- I don’t need most of the stuff I thought I did when I bought it.
- I think about shopping way more than I ever realized.
- It’s time for a yard sale!
As I’ve spent time in the Word this week, I’ve uncovered some truths I have been choosing to ignore for far too long.
1 Timothy 6:6-7 says:
“But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it.”
Of course I realize this place and these things are only temporary, but yet I still desire more stuff! So what’s my issue? Contentment. Woah. Thank you Lord for that smack directly to my cheek! My flesh longs to find something to fill me up, and make me happy. The problem is, the happiness that comes with things is only temporary. In contrast, Psalms 16:11 promises us a much more permanent solution:
“You make known to me the path of life;
you will fill me with joy in your presence,
with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”
Eternal pleasures! That sounds fabulous! We will have no need for all this empty stuff, because as we seek to know the heart of our God, and we grow closer to Him, He will fill us with a joy we can’t ever find in stuff, and He will shower us with pleasures that this world cannot comprehend!
So, will I never make another impulse purchase again? Will I deny my flesh and forgo shopping indefinitely?? Probably not! I’m human. I’m being molded and shaped, just like you are! However, my prayer is that as we find ourselves in yet another checkout line, surrounded by a mountain of meaningless goodies, we will remember that Gods heart desires for us to be content with what we have, and in Him and Him alone, we already have every single thing we NEED!