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ENOUGH: Contentment in an Age of Excess

Will Samson’s “ENOUGH: Contentment in an Age of Excess,” is a very good book – well written, easy to consume. All the basic qualities a person might look for in a good book are present in Samson’s work. That said; I have to admit that this book made me squirm in my seat as I read it. I felt like the back row parishioner in a tent revival who thought that every word the preacher was saying was directed at him.

 

What’s worse is that Samson obviously did not intend to produce this type of response in his readers. His aim is not to irritate, but inspire. Too many books of a similar ilk lose their reader by embarking on long tirades about the “evils of capitalism,” urging people ride bikes instead of cars, recycle plastic and paper products, and stop wasting so much money at the nearby “21 theater Cineplex.” Samson’s approach is different. With good-natured ease, Samson weaves scripture and social commentary together in ways that will caused thoughtful readers to reflect upon the excessive impact of “stuff” on their bodies, the earth, our economy, and culture. .

 

As I read this book, I couldn’t help but wonder when Samson started writing. Certainly the books release in the middle of this current recessions couldn’t be more timely – especially since so many of the causes of this recession seem to be related to the kinds of excesses discussed in this book. Right now it seems that our newly elected political leaders are trying to get the economy “back on track” without even asking it the railway is even heading in the right direction.

 

How do we get our economy back on track? According to our leaders, it is through consumption. That’s what the Bush administration told us after the 9-11 terrorist attacks. That’s what the Obama administration would like to see happening now! We are told that we need to start buying and consuming again – and to prove it, the federal government will start buying and consuming resources it doesn’t even have.

 

This is a place where Samson’s book is both challenging and comforting. He reminds us that if trust God we don’t have to be driven by the admonition to buy and consume. Rather we can live free from those forces trusting God to meet daily needs.

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One Response to “ENOUGH: Contentment in an Age of Excess”

  1. Bill,

    I haven’t read the book yet, but may pick it up! Consumerism is one of the biggest problems in our society. I’m as guilty as anyone else, but have been striving to reduce our spending and increase our savings – even though (thank God) Josh’s job hasn’t been affected by the current recession. Loving the new blog and that I can enjoy your pearls of wisdom again!

    Steph

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