When I was in the eighth grade, the 3rd generation of Nike Air Jordan’s came out. I wanted them badly, but my parents couldn’t afford them. They were $100 which was an unheard of price for shoes back then. I went out and mowed lawns all over the neighborhood just so I could buy them. One night, on an overnight basketball trip, someone pulled the fire alarm. The first thing I did when I woke up was to look for my shoes. It wasn’t to try to get out of the building. My desire to be seen with a cool pair of shoes was greater than my desire to get out of a burning building.
We all know the phrase, “Keeping up with the Jones’.” We would probably all say we don’t try to, but what if we looked it it a different way? What if we looked at it as wanting what God didn’t give us? Whether we’re doing it to try to impress other people or because of our own greed, it’s wrong. It’s easy to see this in other people, but difficult to pinpoint in our own lives. We reason with ourselves that we deserve it, or that it will make us happy. So we begin to want things that we don’t have and then do what it takes to get them. The problem is we then have two categories of items: what God has given us and what we’ve gotten for ourselves. We remove God from being our provider.
Hebrews 13:5 says, “Don’t be obsessed with getting more material things. Be relaxed with what you have. Since God assured us, ‘I’ll never let you down, never walk off and leave you’” (MSG). It’s not wrong to want to better yourself or your life or to have nice things. It becomes wrong when that’s all we think about and it takes the place of our desire for God. When we want the creation more than the Creator, we have our priorities out of alignment. If we will seek first the Kingdom of God, all these things will be given to us. What are you seeking first in your life?