Pushing Back on Materialism

When I was kid, whenever I would lament not having what the neighbor kids had my dad would address my envy by repeating the old cliché about the dangers of trying to keep up with the Jones’s. In a recent article in Atlantic magazine, researcher Dr. Jean Twenge tells us how in today’s world, it’s not so much the neighbors we envy, but everyone and everything we see on social media. She writes, “Now the rich or at least those who appear to be rich fill our feeds and our screens, providing a skewed vision of how other Americans live. The Kardashians cannot, in fact, be kept up with. Online, everyone else’s life looks more glamorous than our own.” Twenge goes on to say that this feeling and sense of relative deprivation is especially present among the younger generations. As Christian parents, we need to counter this with a biblical view of material possessions. We must share the words of Jesus, who tells us in Matthew six to not be anxious, but to seek first God’s Kingdom and His righteousness.