What do you believe to be the greatest hindrance to the work of the Lord in our day? There are many possible answers to this question: parental failure in raising children to know Him, the influence of sociopolitical activism by those who don’t know or understand the inherent lessons of history, or maybe it is the church’s new bent on pleasing non-believers to fill its pews. No matter how you answer, somewhere at the root of most of our hindrances to the work of the Lord are the issues of complacency and prosperity.
Complacency is an “I don’t care” attitude that is common today, and in our culture, seems inseparably linked to prosperity. Nearly everyone has developed ambitions and goals that literally fill their minds and years with endless busyness, rather than God. Long ago, life was filled with the necessities of living, such as: raising food, sewing clothes and repairing one’s aged belongings. We needed God! Today, most everything we “need” falls into the category of consumable/disposable, and we have grown accustomed to having ours “instantly.” Now, we spend more money and we have a lot more time to follow our dreams, rather than to seek God or learn His ways.
Please don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting that God requires that we be dirt poor, or sit on a bed of broken glass for hours under sackcloth and ashes, but be sure, our prosperity can and does effect our spiritual appetite and zeal. This was the context of our Lord’s’ comments in Matthew 19:24 “…It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God.” “…the care of this world, and the deceitfulness of riches, choke the word, and he becometh unfruitful. (Matthew 13:22)”
It is obvious that in our cultural fixation on things, people who have much, think they do not need God, while God is the one who “…giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; (Acts 17:25).” “Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights, with whom is no variableness, neither shadow of turning. (James 1:17)”