― Fyodor Dostoyevsky, The Brothers Karamazov
My children, your father and I are no strangers to the pressures of “keeping up.” Being satisfied with less is an honest to goodness, ongoing struggle in this day and age of iGadgets, McMansions, and “you deserve more, because you’re worth it” – a real swimming upstream ambition.
We are in no way belittling the difficulties you face as young men and women being heavily marketed to, and yes perhaps even judged for what you have or don’t have, wear or don’t wear. And it is tempting as a parent sometimes to want to save you from the temporary sting of being looked down upon, or forced to writhe in disappointment because we can’t or won’t buy you your every heart’s desire.
But, here’s the thing, darlings:
More than a momentary rush we long for you deep and lasting fulfillment, and I believe down to my core that this kind of unearthly contentment is thwarted by a ravenous, unquenchable thirst for material possessions. Dying to greed is painful, it is hard, it is countercultural, but it is necessary for embracing simplicity from which flows gratitude and freedom from envy.
May our joy be ever independent of the accumulation of stuff, fueled instead by a passion for God, people, creativity, beauty, literature, music, generosity and compassion! Oh my loves, there is so much worth savoring right here at our fingertips!Read More