Summary: I want my audience to become very conscious of the effects of covetousness and to replace it with contentment
I was doing OK. Really, I was. Life was pretty good. But then, I heard that if I want to feel right, I need to get a Bowflex. I don’t have a Bowflex, so, I suddenly realize I’m not as healthy as I should be. I can’t be. That guy in the ad has better abs than I do – better abs than I used to have too.
Then, I saw an ad about what I need to do to be stylish. I need to drive a Mercedes convertible. We still own a minivan! Real men drive 2-seater convertibles. But now I’ve learned that I can’t be stylish with the cars I have. No matter how nice my car is or how well it runs, there’s no way it’s a nice as that Mercedes.
Then, an ad came in the mail. Macy’s is having a sale – for spring, because, spring is coming, and you need to dress for the spring season…if you’re going to be fashionable. Last year’s spring fashions are, well, so “last year” now. I didn’t have time to go shop at Macy’s this week. Even though the weather was warmer, I just wasn’t correctly dressed for it, and spring isn’t as…springy.
Then, I got a phone call. I’m not sure how they got my number, or how I even entered the contest… but I won! I was selected. My wife and I are going on a 3-day cruise in the Caribbean, and it’s free! All I have to do is respond, give them my credit card information, and then find out how much it will actually cost me to go on the free trip I’ve won. I didn’t call back. I suspect that they called some other people too. Probably, other people will be going…hundreds of others…but not me. Not now. Now, no matter what I do in April, there’s no way it will be nearly as cool as the cruise I’m not taking.
My computer is now over 2 years old. You realize, don’t you, that makes it a dinosaur? My computer is just as fast as when I first got it, but now there are much faster computers, so it’s not fast enough. My computer’s hard drive still has a lot of space on it, but it could have a much bigger hard drive now. I’m afraid my computer just isn’t good enough. Funny how it got that way without changing.
Even though my computer isn’t good enough, I checked my Facebook page. Wow, I thought my life is good – it says there on Facebook I have 400 friends now. I’m not sure how much all those people really are my friends, but I have 400 of them! But, then, I see how some of my friends have over 1,000 friends, so I’m way behind in that game. I just don’t feel as “friendly” anymore.
I thought I loved my wife enough. But, I didn’t go to Jarret’s, and I didn’t buy her a diamond necklace. In fact, I was informed by I can’t even be romantic with my wife unless we use Sylvania light bulbs. Turns out, we use GE and some off-brand.
By the time I was finished hearing from the TV ads, the magazines, the mail, the phone messages, and the Emails, I have too many reasons to be unhappy to think I’ll ever get there. Contentment? Really? That’s something the other guy has. Just look at how happy he is, and how perfect are his abs!
Some years ago, U.S. News and World Report did a report on the so-called American Dream. Apparently that includes owning your own home and having your basic needs met, and then also it includes being able to do the things you really want to do. The story said that Americans with what was then an average income, when polled, figured it would take about double their current income to live the American dream. And people whose incomes were already in that range, when they were polled, figured it would take…just about double their income to live their version of the American Dream.
Perhaps none of the Big 10 is better suited to our age than #10. This command shares a distinction from the other 9: It’s the only command aimed at just the heart rather than a person’s actions. It’s the only law in history against coveting. It is simply a command that says, “Don’t feel or think this way.” It shows us that really all the Big 10 aren’t just about our actions; they’re aimed at our hearts.
• Achan coveted some silver, gold and a new robe from Babylonia
• David coveted another man’s wife
• Gehazi coveted a little silver and 2 sets of clothing
• Ahab coveted a vineyard.