By nature, human beings drag other human beings into luring, attractive, appealing life styles. MOST of these are useless, meaningless, and futile. Biblical speakers and writers declare CLEARLY the fallacies of these life styles. They are FALLACIOUS FADS, FETISHES, AND RAGES. Unfortunately, most human beings fall into one of these traps. ONLY by trusting in God can God lift us above these fads. Here are ONLY a few examples.
1. MONEY or WEALTH. In all types of media daily, we are bombarded by enticing ways of MAKING MONEY and BECOMING WEALTHY. We ALL want to be MILLIONAIRES or BILLIONAIRES. We assume that IF we can JUST become wealthy, we will have a wonderful life and be happy and everything will be great. Think of the LOTTERY, WALL STREET, CASINOS, firms, corporations, nest egg, stockpile, the list goes on and on. BUT it is not long until ALL OF THIS sours in the mouth. IN NO WAY does wealth satisfy the human heart. Jesus said simply:
"Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust consume and where thieves break in and steal; but store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust consumes and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your HEART will be also." Matthew 6:19-21.
God is seeking a GENUINE HEART. All the fine buildings, means of travel, the works are nice and appealing, but not lasting for very long.
2. FOOD. IN all types of media daily, we are bombarded by enticing ways of preparing and consuming food of all types. Sales persons spend billions of money every year to persuade people to BUY and EAT this or that FOOD or DRINK. Think of Dr. Pepper, Coca Cola, Blue Bell Ice Cream, etc., etc. OF COURSE, we all HAVE to EAT food and DRINK the right kinds of liquids. But for many people, FOOD is the PASSION of life daily. Jesus said simply:
"Do not work for the food that perishes, but for the food that endures for eternal life, which the Son of Man shall give you." John 6:27.
Paul wrote: "The kingdom of God is not food and drink but righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit." Romans 14:17.
YES, God has created us in such a way that we MUST eat food and drink healthy liquids. BUT this is only a means or an instrument which God created so we would and could serve HIM.
3. POSITION and FAME. OUCH!!! WE ALL want PRAISE from other people. ALL OF US want to have a POSITION which will make us feel we are BETTER and MORE IMPORTANT than other people. Jesus said with regard to the RELIGIOUS LEADERS contemporary to Jesus in his lifetime:
"They do all their deeds to be seen by other; for they make their phylacteries borad and their fringes long. They love to have the place of honor at banquets and the best seats in the synagogues, and to be greeted with respect in the marketplaces and have people call them RABBI." Matthew 23:5-7.
WE ALL fall into this subtle trap. This is especially true in the Western World, including the USA. In secular life, I want to be president, governor, senator, representative, mayor, the works. In religious life, I want to be a widely acknowledged RELIGIOUS LEADER. All the disciples of Jesus wanted to have such POSITIONS. James and John asked that they sit on right and left of Jesus. Jesus rejected all these ideas to teach his genuine followers to be servants. Mark
10:35-45. Humility is the first letter in the alphabet of Christianity.
4. GADGETS. Through the centuries, God has given human beings the ability to make new GADGETS of all kinds which fascinate, hypnotize, mesmerize, intrigue, captivate, and entice the hearts of millions of people to distract themselves from the true nature of life. Right now, there is an ongoing RAGE about facebooks, text-messaging, iPods, iPads, websites, games of all types, and the like. Many of my students do not know how to think, to concentrate, to meditate, to pray, to spend time with God and with others. WHAT A TERRIBLE WASTE OF TIME AND MONEY AND EFFORT. Even several universities are buying into this rage. Education, especially Christian education, is possible ONLY if godly people actually work and interact with other living human beings on a daily basis. Jesus set the example. Jesus worked with other human beings to set his example, and he calls all of us to follow his example. PLEASE recall this simple story about Jesus in Luke 10:38-42:
"Now as they went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcome him into her home. She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord's feet and listened to what he was saying. But Martha WAS DISTRACTED BY HER MANY TASKS; so she came to him and asked, 'Lord, do not you care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.' But the Lord answered her, 'Martha, Martha, you ARE WORRIED AND DISTRACTED BY MANY THINGS; there is need of ONLY ONE THING. Mary has CHOSEN THE BETTER PART, which will not be taken away from her.'"
I hope and pray that JUST ONE PERSON will hear and follow this message of Jesus.
Share YOUR ideas and thoughts and concerns and reactions to others. Let me hear from YOU.