Starving to Death in the Land of Plenty

May 18, 2023 by  
Filed under Faith, Faith Articles

By Debra Elmore 
There is a strange phenomenon I am aware of, a condition that belies explanation. I have become so accustomed to this mentality, this over-indulgent way of living, so acclimated to this modern day Babylon, that I scarcely feel its constant pull on my life at times. The slogans surround me, things like” It’s all about you, and isn’t it about time?”, Or “Have it your way”, etc. Wherever I look, whatever I watch, whomever I am around, all seem to be desperately trying to ream some degree of satisfaction from a world overflowing with opportunity, chance, prosperity, and ironically, emptiness. 

I feel as if I am slowly awakening from a deep sleep, sitting upright in the bed of reality.  And, like one still groggy from a dream, I look about myself, trying to make sense of the images being taken in.  I am confused by what I see.  I turn my head one way, and I see the most overweight generation this world has ever seen. If I look the other direction, I am beholding pleasure addictions of other kinds in the form of crack whores, drunks, and child pornographers.

Vices that have existed since the times of Noah and his Ark of safety, magnified, mutated, and escalated. I feel as though I am in a twilight zone of sorts, awash in a sense of the surreal as I view what is now the norm for our society. As grown men camp out in front of the stores in hopes of purchasing the latest video game player, and women remake their bodies surgically and scientifically, kids get their identities from the brands on their shirts and the stuff they own, I take it all in. What, exactly, does all this mean? Shouldn’t we be the most crime free, healthy, and wise people that ever walked the earth? We have technology to protect everything, we have supplements and medical intervention for most known diseases and wounds, and we have the science power to rule the world.

We have so many gadgets, trinkets designed for the sole purpose of making our lives easier, happier, and less stressful.  I have to ask myself, then why is the opposite happening? A recent article in the Houston Chronicle stated psychologists are seeing a trend amongst their patients developing increasingly worse conditions, in direct proportion to how many options and opportunities are available to them. Having 300 choices for their morning coffee seems to be more overwhelming and frazzling, rather than liberating and enjoyable. The irony is, the more we eat, drink, have sex, get high, seek entertainment, and engage in escapism, the more empty we become. In all these forms of self- actualization, it is as if we are eating whole buffets of food that lack any nutritional value or calories, and are completely lacking the ability to truly and permanently satisfy our hunger or quench our thirst. 

I am reminded of some very powerful words spoken to us by a prophet who saw Christ by spirit, though he would be long dead when the Son of Man finally came:

“Come, all you who are thirsty, come to the waters; and you who have no money, come buy and eat! Come, buy wine and milk without money and without cost. Why spend money on what is not bread and your labor on what does not satisfy? Listen, listen to me and eat what is good and your soul will delight in the richest of fare. Give ear and come to me that your soul may live.” Isaiah 55:1-3 NIV

There is an invitation extended here, that only a Supreme Power has the authority to make. We as consumers are given promises, slogans, and false hope that by using a certain product, we will somehow become wealthy, popular, and our receding hairline will spring new growth! I don’t know about you, but it has not taken me a long time to figure out that the promises made to me to get me to buy, are often not going to hold water once I leave the store. They lack power to fulfill the claim which they promised.

If you are tired of being lied to, chasing the wind, tired of endless pursuits and vain attempts at glory, this ancient appeal to a better way, is still extended to you today.  While this satisfaction can be “purchased” without money, the buying power being one without cost, there is still one requirement. Come.

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