Dear Peachtree Family,
Most people do not realize it, but the purpose of a commercial is to make you feel uneasy. The goal of an advertisement is to capture your attention long enough to make you feel like something is wrong or missing from your life. Look closely at any ad and you will discover that they usually do two things: tell you that you have a problem and that they have the solution.
Marketers spend millions of dollars to send you a short, simple, and sly message. For example, drink this kind of beverage, and you will be the life of the party with your friends. Drive this kind of car, and you will be respected. Go on this vacation, and you will finally be able to relax.
Individually, there is nothing wrong with this kind of advertisement, but the cumulative effect of a marketing culture has a much more detrimental impact. Over time, the barrage of the consumerism trains us to be discontented, never to be satisfied. In short, we feel like we never have enough. We always seem to need just a little bit more.
Contrast this dissatisfaction with the words of the Apostle Paul, “For I have learned to be content with whatever I have. I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need.” (Philippians 4:11–12 NRSV)
Paul knows what it means to be content because he trusts God in all circumstances and because he is grateful. This Thanksgiving season, let us remember that the secret to being satisfied in a world of dissatisfaction is the twin-engines of trust and gratitude. You’ll probably never see a billboard about it, but it is what we need most.
With hope in Christ,