Beliefnet
A Simple Life, a Childlike Faith

For the past few days, I spent time with a young man who was on vacation.  He and his companion stayed near my home.  Part of his disability is that he is unable to be satisfied with what he has.  His life revolves around what he desires to eat or have.  Because he comes from an affluent family, at his vacation, he was able to spend over $300.  During much of his vacation, Tony was shopping.

As he and his companion were heading home, she asked him, “Tony, what did you buy on your vacation?”

Tony replied, “I didn’t get the first or second season of the Muppet Show.  I didn’t get theHarry Potter DVD’s.  I didn’t get…”

His companion interrupted, “No.  I asked you what did you get.  Not what you didn’t get.  What did you get on your vacation?”

“I didn’t get season two of the Little Einsteins or…”

“Tony, tell me what you did get.”

“I don’t remember what I got; but I didn’t get…”

“Wait, Tony.  Think about it.  Tell me what you did get.  Surely, you remember something.”

As I heard about the conversation, I could not help but think about my own needs and desires.  The Apostle Paul stated that whatever condition he found himself, he was able to be content.  Obviously, I’m a lot more like Tony than Paul.

Several days ago, I found a shopping bag that contained a wireless keyboard that I’ve wanted for about five years.  While I was on vacation, I bought it in leu of a souvenir.  That was two or three months ago.  I haven’t used this keyboard in the months I’ve had it. Obviously, I didn’t need it nearly as much as I thought I did.  As I listened to what Tony said, my thoughts were drawn to the shopping bag I found with that all-important keyboard that I had forgotten.

In this time of great affluence, needs and desires get complicated, mashed together and confused, even in those who desire to follow Jesus with all of our hearts. My toys have become necessities. Even as a teenager, I heard that the Church was never hurt from without.  Under persecution, the Church thrives.  It is from within that we are destroyed.  Today is a day of much-needed prayer.

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