The World Has Nothing To Offer
“Don’t love the world’s ways. Don’t love the world’s goods. Love of the world squeezes out love for the Father. Practically everything that goes on in the world — wanting your own way, wanting everything for yourself, wanting to appear important — has nothing to do with the Father. It just isolates you from him.” ~ Eugene H. Peterson
I have known many people throughout the years who can only be described as incredibly rich, famous, and powerful. Of those, a number can also be described as anxious, stressed, unhappy, and/or depressed. Their fame, wealth, and power did not buy them the happiness that they thought would happen.
The world tempts us daily. It tells us to invest ourselves into the world and, if we do, we are promised fame, fortune, and power. The world does not inform us, however, that fame, fortune, and power are not the sources to happiness. They are often the sources to stress and aggravation.
If we search for money, we will never be satisfied with what we have because someone inevitably will have more. We will be frustrated if our finances are less than others. If we strive for fame, there will be others who are more famous and/or popular than us. That will bruise our egos. The same holds for power. We might be powerful and influential but not as much as others.
The problem with “having everything” is the realization that we can never truly have everything, that there will always be something else out there beyond our grasp. The other problem with struggling and striving for everything that the world has to offer is that it takes our energy and focus off what truly matters: others and God.
That’s right. Investing in the world means shunning other people, sometimes even our family and friends. It also means ignoring God because God would have us use our wealth, prestige, and influence for the benefit of others. That is not at all what the world tells us to do.
If we know that the world is so against God and His Kingdom, why do we continue to strive for the rewards of the world? Maybe it’s because we live in the world and are surrounded by its glamour and temptations. Our eyes are always directed to what can be seen. We don’t “see” God and His Kingdom every day but we see the world and its promises.
Look around you. Ask yourself the hard question: can any of the world’s promises assure you entrance to heaven?
FAITH ACTION: Strive for the things of the Kingdom and ask God for the courage to reject the lures of the world.