Is Affluenza A Thing?

In Defense of Maximalism

Have you ever felt guilty about the amount of stuff you have? This is something Christian entrepreneurs deal with all the time. It goes something like this, “If you were a real Christian you would sell your stuff and give the money to the poor.”  This mindset has led to some really messed up thinking like affluenza…the “sickness” of having too much stuff.

This week I’m going to introduce my own term…Maximalism…and show you not only why this is a good thing, but why it may be the very thing that saves us from ourselves.


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Spiritual Foundations

I recently took a trip to Hong Kong and suffered some awful jet lag in the process. I figured that because I only sleep a few hours a night as it is and because I was there to do God’s work I could just struggle through the time difference and be right as rain.

That got me thinking about this whole issue of, “What does God cause, what does He allow, and is there a difference?”

One of the verses in the Bible that gets brought up to point out that God does cause bad things to happen to people for His own glory, is the story of the blind man who was blind from birth. The disciples come to Jesus and they say, “Who sinned that this man is blind? Was it him or was it his parents?” That was their belief system in that culture. If you were born with a handicap, it was because of somebody’s sin. You get punished for someone else’s sin…man that is twisted!

In this episode I’ll share the answer Jesus gave and reveal to you the proper context so you’ll finally be able to understand what He was really saying.

This will set you free.

Tip of the Week

I just got a drone, the DJI Mavic Pro. Right away I discovered two things about owning a drone. First of all, when you set the thing on the ground and you turn the engines on, the props spin up, and you realize you’re about to send a lot of money hurtling into the sky. That’s a little scary. The second thing I discovered is there are a lot of places you're not allowed to fly your drone. Funny thing is they don’t mention that when you buy it.

The FAA, municipalities, state and federal parks, and even private property owners all have something to say about where you can fly your magical new device. It’s all very confusing…or at least it was.

Now there’s an app for that. It's called airmap.io and it incorporates all the available information and it marries it together with Google Maps. You pop up a map on your iOS or Android device and it shows you all the different airspaces, and who controls them.

By using this app all drone owners, or Droners as they’re called, can now safely and responsibly fly without fear.

Feature Presentation: “Is Affluenza A Thing? In Defense of Maximalism”

I was recently listening to a Cliff Ravencraft podcast episode entitled, “Do I really need all this stuff?” In this podcast he was discussing an email he received from a listener chiding him for buying all the expensive podcast equipment he uses when, in their opinion, he should have given that money to the poor.

Cliff made a very impassioned argument about how that was not true, and I think he is right. It makes me want to spend a little more time on this topic this week because Cliff touched on something that I think is really important to understand.

Conventional wisdom says that either you have affluenza, the disease of accumulating too much stuff, or you are a minimalist. This week I would like to present a third option, Maximalism.

Here are a few snippets from our conversation:

  • Words mean things – Sean’s latest Rant of the Week (20:32)
  • The living system – Why the correct definition of a concept matters so much and the high calling of trading value for value (23:19)
  • The wealth of selection – Why it doesn’t matter how much stuff you have, but instead it matters about making your stuff meaningful to you (23:43)
  • Think for yourself – You, yes you, get to decide how much is too much and how much is not enough (24:45)
  • You’re asking the wrong question – Why putting an arbitrary limit on how many items you can have is completely ridiculous and shows that you don't understand why you have things (26:07)
  • The intentional decision – How to determine whether you own things, or things own you (26:35)
  • You wasted your money on that – The truth about items you hardly use and how they amplify your creative process (27:29)
  • I just want that – How to turn any purchase into your own personal R&D experiment (29:39)
  • Wanting what you want – How to leave behind a world of justification and scarcity and enter a world of abundance and creativity where you're always free to want what you want (31:09)
  • You have permission to prosper – Discover the massive difference between want and need when it comes to being successful (32:51)
  • The mic drop moment – The shocking truth that Jesus did not make the ultimate sacrifice, and what really happened (36:14)
  • Business is good – Here’s what you’re really doing when you buy stuff (37:07)
  • The way to great wealth – How capitalism made it possible to become wealthy by serving your fellow man (39:55)
  • Know your own mind – Why Maximalism is the key to enjoying wealth while making a difference (41:32)

Resources Mentioned in This Episode

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  • Yeah, you probably have too much stuff. And that’s way, way, way better than not having enough stuff. Christians who determine otherwise typically don’t read the Bible in context…or have no clue of context. I love the “either/or” issue you brought up in the podcast. When Jesus was given a choice between A or B, He most often would choose C. That’s wisdom from the Creator of the universe…who said He wants us to have life more abundantly.

  • Free Press Media

    Ray, though I may disagree with some points in this podcast, I applaud you for giving me some things to think about. Interesting how two Christians base their conclusions on atheistic Ayn Rand.

    John Piper recently addressed this very same issue in his podcast contrasting minimalism with his theory of “Wartime Living” Piper noted something to the effect of, “Wartime living is not going without, but it involves a reallocation of resources from self gratification to missionary penetration so we can accomplish more.” I wonder what you would think of this.