Why you won’t hear this four-letter word
I open my mailbox, and the glossed paper tells a story. Maybe it’s a story about modern society. Maybe it’s a story about prosperous times. Maybe it’s a story about me since I look at every single catalog, dog-earing pages and revisiting them. And I do the same with the Sunday paper that spills out on the living room floor.
The story is also told in the 44-ounce big mug at the convenience store.
Or the bottle of Scotch sold by a big box store that costs $17,000.
Or the Triple Burger sold by a freckled-face, pig-tailed redhead, packing a mere 1,120 calories
Or the jacked up Hummer with chromed 22-inch rims that’s never ever seen a dirt road
Or the 60 inch television on sale for $800.
It’s not just possessions. We are excessive in our hook ups and our break ups. We want more love without effort. We want more money without work, more pleasure with less inconvenience.
It seems the four letter word no one wants to use is Deny.
We don’t hear it in the media, as our culture is all about claiming their fair share, their rights, their moment. Sadly, we don’t hear it from the pulpit, as this is not a popular message in a church bent on bigger is better.
The lessons of hard work, faithful service, and putting others first are lost. We simply don’t tolerate denial in a modern culture.
But we all know in our hearts that there is simplicity in a lack of complexity. There is peace to found in the ease of letting go.
Jesus wants us to deny ourselves – our selfish wants, our material lusts, our immaterial pettiness – and seek first His ways.
Somewhere inside I hear a voice calling me this path. I think the burden of more will ultimately drives me to less.
What do you think? Is denial a virtue, or a vice?