Battling ‘Affluenza’

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During 1918-19 more than twenty million people worldwide died in just 120 days as a result of the influenza virus, or what was commonly known as Spanish Flu. Statistics show 12.5 million of these deaths were in India, and half a million in the United States, including more than onehalf of the population of Alaska. It spread quickly and in many cases was deadly.

Another type of virus has found its way onto our continent. No, I am not speaking about AIDS or of some type of flesh-eating disease. I am speaking of ‘affluenza.’ Have you heard of it? It is a disease that can control a person and cause them to make poor choices because of their desire for wealth. These people have a continual hunger for bigger and better ‘things.’ They are never really satisfied with what they have. They are blind to the fact that their family relationships may be suffering as a result of their greed. Far worse than that, their eternal destiny and relationship with God is at stake.

In Luke 12:16-20, we read of a farmer who had a huge harvest, which was really from the Lord. He thought he was self-sufficient for many years to come. His attitude concerning his life was eat, drink and be merry. He had no thought of God, nor was he thankful for the blessings he received from God. God called him a fool (Luke 12:20). He died and, in spite of his full barns, faced God with all his sins. He was unprepared to meet God. The riches of this world have absolutely no value in eternity (Matthew 6:19-21).

Living to please oneself is a typical attitude today. People are failing to prepare for their future when they must meet God. Not only that, they are missing out on what life is really all about. The Bible says we are not to “trust in uncertain riches, but in the living God, who giveth us richly all things to enjoy” (1 Timothy 6:17). God wants you to enter into a relationship with Him (John 14:6). This is only possible because of the death of the Lord Jesus Christ. God’s Word, the Bible, says “Prepare to meet thy God” (Amos 4:12). We do not know what tomorrow will bring.

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