A Prayer Against the Temptation of Materialism
By: Emily Rose Massey
No temptation has overtaken you except something common to mankind; and God is faithful, [e]so He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13, NASB).
The other day, I saw a post on Instagram that said, “I saw it. I liked. I bought it. Now hide it!” Although this graphic was created to make people chuckle, it truly made me sad how much these words speak to how consumed with consumerism we are.
In our current society, you cannot use your phone without being sucked into the black hole of materialism. “Sponsored” posts advertising non-stop on our social media accounts and bloggers who are full-time marketing tools for companies filling up your feed. It seems like you can't really escape it anymore. Do you feel the pull to buy more of what is before your eyes because someone else has it? Click "add to cart" and "check out?"
If you don't need it, why are you buying it? Do you covet what another has? These are questions I have asked myself countless times because the temptation of materialism has been a struggle in my own life. #Targetmademedoit #Influenced have become a reality in my life more often than I care to admit.
You know, it is often a joke among women that we hide our Amazon Prime packages or shopping bags from our husbands, like it is a secret behavior that all women do that is totally normal. But sister, this is so wrong. And quite frankly, it is a sin. How can we be in unity with our spouse if we are literally hiding something from them? Why do we make jokes about that? Let's call this what it is, and admit we have a problem. This behavior of materialism is rooted in covetousness, and it is not a joking matter to God.
Covetousness is a strong desire to have that which belongs to another. It is considered to be a very grievous offense in Scripture. The tenth commandment forbids coveting anything that belongs to a neighbor, including his house, his wife, his servants, his ox or donkey, or anything that belongs to him (Exodus 20:17). Jesus listed covetousness or greed along with many of the sins from within in the sermon on the Mount. This graphic on Instagram isn't cute and should reveal to us the matter of our heart. Do you wrestle with impulsively buying things you don't need? I do, too. Big time.
But just because we are tempted by something doesn’t mean we have not been given help to escape. 1 Corinthians 10:13 promises us:
“No temptation has overtaken you except something common to mankind; and God is faithful, [e]so He will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it” (1 Corinthians 10:13, NASB).
The temptation is strong and may seem like it surrounds us at every corner, but God can help us overcome it. He always provides a way out. Let's keep our eyes on that escape and ask the Lord for strength when temptation comes. Let us also learn how to confess when we are tempted and hold each other accountable, sisters.
Materialism and consumerism constantly bombard us. I admit that I have been overtaken by the tidal wave of temptation to buy things that I do not need. Instead of budgeting for items, I have made impulse purchases. I ask You to help me when I face the temptation to buy things that I don’t need or perhaps want because someone else has it. I may be tempted by materialism, but I do not have to act upon it and sin against You. Help me see these things clearly, Father.
I trust that You provide all of my needs. I ask for You to help me steward my finances and help me to be content with what You have given me. Thank You for Your grace to overcome this temptation and for always providing an escape for me.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Emily Massey began writing short stories and poetry as a little girl, entered the blogging world in her early 20s, and published her first book in 2015. She enjoys being a stay-at-home momma while still being able to pursue her passion as a writer. Believing she has been forgiven much, she loves much, and desires to point others to Christ and His redemptive and transforming power, especially by sharing truth found in God’s written word. If you would like to connect with Emily, you can visit www.emilyrosemassey.com.
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