I don’t have a problem with consumerism in general. Who doesn’t like shopping? Who doesn’t enjoy the feeling of purchasing a new pair of shoes? We all need groceries and clean clothes and stuff. What gave me pause was listening to the news yesterday about how consumer spending is still declining. Apparently we are supposed to spend our way out of this recession.

One problem with that: People don’t have the money to consume at the rate we had before.

In fact, our national unemployement rate is at an all time high and not only are people in survival mode – more concerned with keeping a roof over their heads than getting that plasma screen TV – but they’re also being more frugal. The American people are learning that we need to save money.

It’s not fair to expect the people who have the least to spend and be solely responsible for pulling the world economy out of the state of depression. What we really need and what made the US so great and prosperous so long ago was innovation, creativity and productivity. Mind you, we have the productivity down don’t we? We work harder than we have ever worked before, harder and longer than most other Western nations and yet we are not happier or healthier.

3 John 1:2 says, “Beloved, I pray that in all respects you may prosper and be in good health, just as your soul prospers.”

This doesn’t mean that we shall prosper as we persue prosperity and wealth, but instead that as we prosper spiritually – as our lives and collective consciousness is enriched – it will begin to show outwardly. I consider myself a living example of such spiritual prosperity being reflected in my life. As my consciousness has shifted from poverty and lack, to knowing I am destined for great things, as I have pursued my passions with purpose, I have also begun to prosper. Like a plant with healthy roots, I have blossomed and have begun to bare the fruit of that bloom.

Sure it all sounds esoteric and spiritual but I truly believe physical prosperity and well-being is connected to spiritual prosperity and well-being. We are as we believe. Why do you think so many morally bankrupt people are also suffering (not enough for my taste but whatever).

There will always be external forces affecting each individual but my experience is that good usually triumphs and shopping is just a drug. Shame on the media for trying to convince people that they are being irresponsible for saving money, for being frugal during these tumultuous economic times. There are people flourishing despite all of the bad news, proof that this too shall pass.

Its time to shift our consciousness from consumption to spiritual prosperity. Let’s not let the media and big business continue to sell us this idea that things will make us healthy and happy. This hasn’t proven true yet and I doubt it ever will.