Our economy and much of our lives are based on having more. We teach our children that if they grow up and have more they are a success. For instance, it is the goal and aspiration for us as kids to have more than our parents. So from an early age, we are taught if we have more, own more, make more, and do more we are successful by the standard of more.
More Isn’t Better
Lately, I have come to understand that more isn’t better. Let me give you an example. I have learned the more I do the more it costs me. The more events we are involved with, the more times we go, the more we are on the go, the more we spend on food because we can’t prepare it at home (which is way cheaper). Also, the more on the go we are, the more we spend on gas because we are always in the car. The more we spend on maintaining our home because we don’t have the time to do it ourselves.
I have also learned the more I have the more it has me! For example the more (larger) yard I have the more time I have to spend cutting it. The more house I have the more I have to work to pay for it. The more (higher-paying) job I have the more I have to work to keep it. The more toys I have the more I have to work to maintain them.
Bait and Switch
Truth is we have been programmed to be idolaters. Idolatry is the worship (investing our lives in) a god other than the true God, Jesus. Worship comes with expectations and a return. The worship of the god MORE has gotten us a lot in return. It has gotten us more in debt, more stressed, more bitter, more divorced, more foreclosed on, more disappointed, and more dead (we are dying younger due to the stress load).
That isn’t what we expected, we expected that if we had more we would enjoy more. We got the bait and switch. 75% of Americans say they spend a significant amount of time worrying about losing what they have. We spend more time worrying about losing what we have than we do enjoying it.
We need to relearn what life really is. Jesus said it like this:
“Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; a man’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” Luke 12:15 NIV
In other words, there is way more to life than simply having more, getting more, and keeping more. What if we traded stress for peace, debt for credit, and disappointment for joy? What would life look like if we chose to live instead of worry?