Reflections on Psalm 49 and a Visit to IKEA (Devotions for Real Homeschool Moms)

I’ll never forget my first visit to IKEA. If you are fortunate enough to live near one of these colossal stores, you can probably relate to my overwhelmed feeling. If you don’t have an IKEA close by or if you (like I was) are unaware of the magnificence, let me explain.

 IKEA is a HUGE home organization, home decor, and furniture sales place. Our local IKEA covers two enormous stories and houses hundreds of showrooms, a restaurant, a kids play place, a furniture warehouse, and a Swedish bistro. (IKEA is Swedish in origin.)
Reflections on Psalm 49

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As I wandered the store- everything is arranged in a semicircular manner, so you can’t walk the aisle, you have to circle around and see everything- I began to lust. I began to dream. I began to explain to my husband why we needed everything in the store and how we could possibly sell our children to get it. (Just kidding…sort of.) 

 Until my visit to IKEA, I had been fairly content. We are a one income family, and that doesn’t leave much room for funds for home decor- unless the hundreds of books I purchase to use for homeschooling count for decor. But, I wandered the IKEA store and dreamed of all I could have, if I were only “rich.”

I was rather convicted by the time I came home. Not because I had been to the store. It was a great store, and if you were in the market to buy furniture, they have some great prices. But, because I had allowed myself, if only for a moment, to get caught up in the mindset; “If I just had a little bit more, I could be happy.” 

 It’s a sneaky, devious thing. It can hit us when we visit a friend and see her new living room furniture. It can hit us at church when the new family pulls up in a brand new car. It can quickly go from admiring to wishing I had “just a little bit more.”

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Later, I was reading Psalm 49. Even waaaay back then, apparently folks struggled with this. The Psalmist reminds us that wealth is fleeting:

10 For he sees that even wise men die; the [self-confident] fool and the stupid alike perish and leave their wealth to others.

11 Their inward thought is that their houses will continue forever, and their dwelling places to all generations; they call their lands their own [apart from God] and after their own names.

12 But man, with all his honor and pomp, does not remain; he is like the beasts that perish.

13 This is the fate of those who are foolishly confident, yet after them men approve their sayings. Selah [pause, and calmly think of that]!

We studied Ancient Egypt earlier this year in our homeschool and learned how the Egyptians used to put so many of their valuables and much of their wealth in their tombs to take with them into the afterlife. You know what, they had a bitter wake up. Those things do not last. They are temporal. We cannot take them with us.

So, it is fun to shop in a magnificent store like IKEA. It is even fun to buy something if you can. (I got some great plastic cups and bowls for my kids on my first visit, and we still use them today!) 
Reflections on Psalm 49 and a Visit to IKEA
 But, we must always be careful of that sneaky thought that tells us we would be happy if we could just have a little more.

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