As we are continuing to look for a new home, I keep battling in my mind our specific needs in life. Everyone knows that there is a difference between wants and needs. The hard part, is deciphering which is which. It’s easy to say I WANT a new house with four bedrooms, two baths, a big kitchen and laundry room, and at least an acre or two of land. It gets harder when you stand back and look at your wish list and contemplate if those are things you really NEED.
A dear brother at our church just got back from overseas. As he was talking and showing us a little slide show one service, I felt condemned on so many levels. Condemned that those people go through life rejoicing, even when they don’t have:
A nice house (with four bedrooms and two baths); cars; new clothes, shoes, jewelry, purses; snazzy new electronics; nice home furnishings; air conditioning; extra money for vacations and eating out; or even basic things we take for granted, like an indoor bathroom and kitchen.
The U.S., as a nation, has been abundantly blessed beyond words. Even on most of our worst days, we have it much better than A LOT of other folks in the world. In my own personal life, I get discouraged when so many friends and acquaintances have such materialistic views. It seems like many of them are trying to keep up with the “Joneses”, but for what purpose. The bible plainly teaches us to lay up our treasures in Heaven, not on earth. So why all the pressure to feel like we must buy our way to the top in life?
With all that being said, I AM thrilled to be living in the United States of America. I am thrilled that I have the options that I do in this life. I’m thrilled that I have an indoor bathroom that is cooled with central air conditioning, and that I can wash my clothes in an electric washing machine…I would sure hate to have it any other way. But, do I consider myself spoiled? Yes! Do I consider myself blessed? Most definitely! I only want to stop and consider that a lot of things we think are needs, are really just wants…and when you get right down to it, people have A LOT of wants, and very few needs!!!
So, if you see my kids wear an outfit you saw them in the Sunday before last, or you see me wear the SAME flip-flops over and over~ if you see me carrying that same old sad-looking purse, or wonder why our family doesn’t go out to eat like we used to, just keep in mind that there are two possible reasons:
We are totally broke, or we are being mindfully aware of our needs vs. our wants….(and truth be told, it will probably be a mix of both! ROTFL)