The advertisements on a social media feed are custom fed to each one of us. They take our demographics, our browsing history, and whatever other bits of information we drop along the way and build an ad campaign just for us. In the weeks before Christmas I kept seeing ads for dollhouse furniture on my Facebook feed. Becky was looking for a Christmas gift for one of our granddaughters and sent me some links. Google told Facebook all about it. For several weeks Santa’s would-be suppliers tried to entice me with deals on their most popular lines. Little Ada loved the gift, but I am not sure the ad campaign had much effect.
I wondered what the digital oligarchy was thinking this morning when they offered me a new Maserati for $769 a month. What do they know about me, and why did they think I might be tempted? Have they discovered that people who are interested in dollhouse furniture are often in the market for expensive Italian luxury cars? I’ll send Becky the link and see what she thinks.
The Maserati people are not just tempting me with a really nice car, however. Rightly so, they reminded me that peace of mind is priceless, and then they added in a three-year maintenance deal to the $769 lease. Peace of mind may be priceless, but for $769 a month you get the Maserati and the three-year maintenance deal – maybe that is as close to peace of mind as you can get in this tired old world.
I wonder what they know about me?
The Maserati looks really nice, but I am leaning towards keeping my nine-year old Honda Civic and looking for peace of mind elsewhere.
Psalm 3 is a psalm with a story. One of the editors of the ancient text tells us the Psalm is “a Psalm of David, when he fled from Absalom his son.” The reference is to 2 Samuel 15:14–15 and Absalom’s rebellion, “Then David said to all his servants who were with him at Jerusalem, ‘Arise, and let us flee, or else there will be no escape for us from Absalom. Go quickly, lest he overtake us quickly and bring down ruin on us and strike the city with the edge of the sword.’ And the king’s servants said to the king, ‘Behold, your servants are ready to do whatever my lord the king decides.’”
The story ends with Absalom’s death and David’s mournful cry, “O my son Absalom, my son, my son Absalom! Would I had died instead of you, O Absalom, my son, my son!” (2 Samuel 18:33)
In the midst of all the chaos a broken and hurting world brings into his life – betrayal, death, anguished mourning – David writes, “I lay down and slept; I woke again, for the LORD sustained me.” (Psalm 3:5)
Peace of mind is priceless, and $769 a month won’t get us close to it. God offers it to us as a gift.
Right before he fall to sleep, David writes,
But you, O LORD, are a shield about me,
my glory, and the lifter of my head.
I cried aloud to the LORD,
and he answered me from his holy hill. (Psalm 3:3-4)
In a world where it seems elusive, we may be tempted to lease just a little peace of mind for $769 a month.
Jesus, Son of David, says, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” (Matthew 11:28–30)
I’m keeping the Civic.