It seems that for many of us, life is a constant tug-of-war. A lot of effort, but no progress. Some do not wish to pull against the forces of our culture and have already allowed themselves to be drug through the mud. Many of us, however, would like to stay out of the mud, but will not allow ourselves to let go of the rope. There is something on the other side we want. We have even convinced ourselves that we need it and we aim to pull it across for our own possession. So we waste time and energy pulling and going nowhere. We struggle but do not achieve the satisfaction of victory.
The rope pulls hard. The tug comes from almost every voice we hear. We can better what we wear, drive, own and eat; where we live, work, and travel; and how we entertain ourselves. What we currently have is out-of-date, out-of-style, out-of-order, or just outlandish and worthy of ridicule. It can be, and should be, better than it is now. It is possible and desirable to have more and more, faster and faster. All this and more convenience too. Conversations with friends and family, billboards, magazine ads, radio programming, movies, and television attack our contentment and create in us a fierce drive to get more from life. So we grab the rope and pull. Sadly, the struggle does not satisfy.
Fortunately, there is a way to be satisfied that doesn’t require this stuggle. We can completely change the way we think. We can let go of the rope and pursue something entirely different.
If we have food and covering, with these we shall be content. But those who want to get rich fall into temptation and a snare and many foolish and harmful desires which plunge men into ruin and destruction. For the love of money is a root of all sorts of evil, and some by longing for it have wandered away from the faith and pierced themselves with many griefs. But flee from these things, you man of God, and pursue righteousness, godliness, faith, love, perseverance and gentleness.
Those of us that profess to be Christians would say that we agree with this passage from 1 Timothy, Chapter 6, but most of us don’t live our lives that way. Perhaps the more spiritual among us, have been more fully “transformed by the renewing of your mind” (Romans 12:2). They simply let go of the pulling force of our perverse culture, and are content to stay clean. At some point, we have to believe that God satisfies and what this culture sells does not. As is so often the case, it is a matter of faith. May God help us trust Him, relax our grip on this world, and let it go.