Moving Past Vanity
If I remember correctly, my plan to convince my wife went something like this: “I can absolutely justify borrowing the money. That device will meet all my future needs. Just think, all the parts are individually replaceable. I know it’s big, but it’s also extremely fast for a 1985 model.”
Unfortunately, even the best computer ever made was never updated as I had planned. Five years later and every five years thereafter, we purchased a new laptop that outpaced, outlasted and surpassed even what I thought was the most impressive of all systems at the time.
Most of us can substitute some material possession in this story that over time becomes less appealing. We buy the next ‘one thing’ we believe will provide the answer, but it does not. Whether bigger, faster, newer, or for some other reason, we are continually seeking more. A reflection on Ecclesiastes might help us find what we really need.
“Vanity of vanities! All things are vanity.” The book begins and ends with these powerful words. The phrase itself conjures images of the superficial, the meaningless, or futile. The author leaves little to the imagination.
There’s nothing wrong with liking our belongings or appreciating something new. Even so, our material possessions cannot take the place of our call towards greater holiness. We do, however, need a reminder from time to time. Fortunately, there are some strategies we can implement to anchor our focus beyond vanity. Consider the following as lifestyle opportunities:
Our relationship with God is the antidote to vanity. A complete investment in the Lord does not weaken over time. Ours is to choose well and know that even the smallest of steps can make an enormous difference.
Deacon Luc and Diana Papillon
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