Feb 19, 2012

Needs Versus Wants

Need - Something you have to have; Want -Something you would like to have

The difference between a need and a want is pretty simple -- until you set yourself loose in a store. Double chocolate chip ice cream? It's a food, so mark it as a need. That designer t-shirt that fits you perfectly? Well, you need more shirts, so why shouldn’t it count too?
Tally up the damage caused by a few justifications like these, and suddenly you've spent far more than you intended.
What's the Solution?
A better understanding of what a need really is.



In actuality, you only need four things to survive:
  • A roof over your head
  • Enough food and water to maintain your health
  • Basic health care and hygiene products
  • Clothing (just what you need to remain comfortable and appropriately dressed)
Everything that goes beyond this – a big house, name-brand clothes, fancy foods and drinks, a new car – is a want.
Does that mean that you should only buy the things that you need? Not at all. Life is meant to be lived, not survived. Treat yourself to some wants along the way, but do so when you can afford to, and enjoy those wants as the extras that they are.
Why We Discuss it Now?

The 'worries of this world' have infiltrated our lives.

For example, this chart shows that our basic wants and needs have tremendously increased in just 100 years of time. The things we might worry about have gone far beyond the mere food, drink and clothing that Jesus spoke about.
Notice how the simple line graph above so clearly reflects this trend in worries.
Today we mainly worry over wants rather than needs. We are driven by our lusts and worry over them. This is always sinful. Our worry betrays our wayward and worldly hearts.
But Jesus goes a step beyond this.
He says it is sinful to worry even about our most basic needs. This is a life style that most of us have not been tested on. Just because we do not worry about the basics, we do not think we have a problem here. But because we have a ready supply of basic needs such as water and food, we are not tested.
More than likely we would miserably fail.
Jesus' command to store things up in heaven where no one can take away is the soundest advice we can get.
We gain three things when we do this.
  • We prove we live for the eternal.
  • A deep peace comes to our hearts because all is at rest.
  • Three, we actually have done what brings the greatest profit.
    When we properly invest one talent, we shall gain one city. - see parable.
The author John Ruskin tells of the discovery of a sunken ship off the coast of California.
One of the passengers was fastened into his seat by a belt that contained two hundred pounds of gold. And Ruskin asks the question,
“As the man was sinking had he the gold? Or had the gold him?”
The Protestant reformer Martin Luther wrote:
“A man that depends on the riches and honours of this world, forgetting God and the welfare of his soul, is like a little child that holds a fair apple in the hand, of agreeable exterior, promising goodness, but within ‘tis rotten and full of worms.”
Tomorrow, we will find out what happens when our wants become so large that greed becomes the controlling factor that blinds us when we make the choices in our lives. Poor Lot and his family found out how “all that glitters is not gold.”
“If you want to feel rich, just count all the things you have that money can’t buy.”
Author Unknown
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