I’ve found that the best remedy for regaining that inner quiet and peace is by choosing to do the right thing. We’re such impulsive people. Whatever we have, we always want something better. I long for the day when, like St Paul, I can consistently say that I have learnt to be content whatever the circumstances. John the Baptist said the same thing when he told the crowds to “be content with your pay.”
No matter what we have we always want something else. If we find this attitude within ourselves, then the advertisers have succeeded and we have become a victim of the prevailing culture. We are no longer in control of our impulses. They now control us. The goal of advertising is to create the impression of a vacuum that doesn’t really exist in order to make a dollar.
The Gospel is counter-cultural and transformational. Romans 12:1 says ‘no longer be confromed to the pattern of this world.’ Jesus said “What will it profit you if you gain the whole world but lose yourself?” How I need to take that to heart and be transformed by the One spoke these words of life so many years ago.
Our hearts are restless. We consistently feel wired and discontent. As Douglas Adams, in The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy, put it so brilliantly,
“This planet has – or rather had – a problem, which was this: most of the people on it were unhappy for pretty much of the time. Many solutions were suggested for this problem, but most of these were largely concerned with the movements of small green pieces of paper.”
In these times of financial hardship for so many, the words of Jesus are more relevant than ever.