One of my favorite characters in all film is Scrat from the Ice Age movies. He is obsessed with one thing and one thing only: acquiring acorns. His sole reason for living is to get an acorn. He will risk anything, go anywhere for that acorn. You can imagine the joy and excitement he experiences once he gets it.
Except he isn’t happy. He clutches his acorn with passion. He worries that he will lose it. Once he has it there is no joy, only worry that he will lose it.
In addition to the worry, he starts to want…wait for it…another acorn. Not only is one acorn not enough but a thousand is not enough. Scrat is doomed to misery. There is no number of acorns that he would be happy with.
We laugh at Scrat. He is hilarious. Why so funny? Because he is us.
As Americans, we are some of the wealthiest people who have ever lived. We aren’t hungry. We aren’t thirsty. We sleep in beds at night. We have a God who has supplied all our needs. We are also not content. We have a 1000 acorns, but we know a guy who has 1002 and we envy him.
This is also a driver of our porn addiction as a people. We want our wives and we want other women too. So we stare at other women. Refusing to be content with what we have we open ourselves to all kinds of misery. So many of the relationship stresses we bear can be traced back to this discontent. We become envious (for more on this, check out this incredible sermon on the many faces of envy). Despite the many graces given to us, we refuse to be happy with the wife God has provided.
Like asking Scrat to be content with the acorns he has, it is never quite as simple to apply the principle as it is to say it. But don’t let you excuse factory get going. I can imagine all of the arguments Scrat could come up with.
“I’m just concerned about having enough for the future.”
“God would want me to be happy.”
“You see, I have needs. I need to eat acorns.”
“You could never understand how hard it is to not have an acorn.”
Like all excuses, these are reasons that we come up with to remain miserable. Somehow, we vehemently protect the wall between us an joy.
So be content, brothers. Don’t be a saber-toother squirrel!