I turned on the television the other night (well actually very early morning-I tend to be a night owl) to find a show titled "My Super Sweet Sixteen" or some such thing. I was horrified to discover that the premise of the program was to glorify rampant consumerism and the celebrity lifestyle at the expense of the character of some rather spoiled American children.
I have seen this program a few times now and I'm truly appalled. These children manipulate their parents into spending unseemly amounts of money to satisfy their wish to throw the "biggest party ever". On the face of it, there seems to be a fascination with the celebrity lifestyle into which these children are attempting to buy their way. In reality one can see children desperately seeking for limits and sincere friends. I say that because there is no end to the demands these children put on their parents-expensive new cars, jewelry, dress codes for the guests, exotic animals, bands etc. But, when the time comes to distribute the invitations, on more than one occasion, their "friends" are not where they were supposed to be. Perhaps this is simply poor planning on the part of the show's producers or a naive expectation that of course "everyone" would be waiting on the whims of these wealthy young people. In either case, these children often choose to simply give invites to whoever happens to be hanging around. To me this appears to be a desperate bid for friendship. One that is doomed to fail, because money can't buy you friends.
These children (one of whom, appalling in and of itself, was the child of the minister of the city's largest Christian church), clearly understand that true friendship is a valuable thing and equally clearly, they understand or believe that their "friendships" may not be trustworthy due to their wealth. They do not seem to trust those whose friendship they claim and seek to deepen those relationships through vacuous displays of wealth and celebrity like behavior. Their parents may not have provided a foundation of logical thinking whereby they should be able to objectively evaluate their relationships and be content with them.
These shows are a parental "FAIL" in more ways than one. I hope that, upon viewing the programs, these parents will be able see themselves and their roles in the upbringing of their children more appropriately. I hope it gives them the fortitude to exercise appropriate limits and give their children the guidance they are so clearly craving. Otherwise these children will remain as pathetic and needy as they were at the time of their parties and that would be a very sad thing.
"But godliness with contentment is great gain.
For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out.
And having food and raiment let us be therewith content.
But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition.
For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows.
But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness.
Fight the good fight of faith, lay hold on eternal life, whereunto thou art also called, and hast professed a good profession before many witnesses. "~ 1Tim 6-12