Avril's old enough to watch the Baby Einstein DVDs now. We purchased one for Norah several years ago, then we were given another one a year or so ago. So, I had a lesson in contentment the other day... when I went to pull this DVD from it's case and let Avril watch it.
For a moment, I remembered how sad it used to make me that we only had one of these for Norah. These DVDs aren't that popular now, but back when Norah was Avril's age, you may remember, they were all the rage. They were everywhere you shopped, on every shelf in every store. Wholesale clubs like Costco and Sam's even had a "special collection" that included every Baby Einstein DVD ever made.
At the time, it was really discouraging to me to go through birthdays and Christmases and paydays and more birthdays and more Christmases... without receiving them or having money left over at the end of a pay period to purchase another one. It seemed so important back then, for some reason, that we have them all or to at least be able to buy another one here and there until, maybe, we had them all eventually. I felt like we were being deprived of something Norah really needed or deserved... not that I thought they'd actually make her a genius or anything.
But, it occurred to me that the two DVDs we do have have just been sitting in the case for well over two years now anyway. I haven't thought of them once in that space of time, so, I realized it really wasn't that important after all. And, I was kind of shocked at how much greed had gotten such a hold on me over these silly little DVDs and I was mad at how much the evil one had once used this to make me feel discontent and prod me into thanklessness for that portion of Norah's childhood.
Then, I wondered... how many other things do I covet for Norah today, right this moment, that say... five years from now, won't matter a bit to me... just like those Baby Einstein DVDs?
I love "collecting" these things for her. But, I asked myself, "How much of this stuff does she really need anyway?" since she's only one kid, since she can only wear one shirt at a time (and only a few shirts in a season before she outgrows them), since she can only wear one hair bow at a time (and rarely tolerates bows to begin with), since she can only watch one movie so many times (a few hundred times or so, yes, but eventually every DVD does get old).
And that is when I was freed, so to speak, from the tyranny of greed that I didn't even realize existed in this area of my life. It was (and is) easy for me to justify, too, since it was all for Norah (and since we can "hand it down" to Avril). But, it was and is still greed, none the less.
Be on the guard against all forms of greed, for a man's life (and the richness of our childrens' memories) does not consist of the abundance of his possessions. -Luke 12:15