In my church, there is a lot of talk about prosperity. Mostly this talk involves the idea that if you think prosperously, you will be prosperous. I want to hear in these discussions that this is a prosperity of the soul, but that isn't what is said at all. The idea that is being put forth involves things - things that we think we have to have to be successful and happy. The idea is this: all you have to do is change your way of thinking and the kingdom of earth will be yours.
I often sit in the pew and think that this must set up the same kind of situation for failing that other churches set up about prayer: If you just pray hard enough and have enough faith, your prayers will be answered. See how this parallels? If you just think about prosperity in the right way, you will be prosperous.
Where does this leave the person whose prayers don't get answered? And where does this prosperity thing leave the person who doesn't get all the things his or her heart desires? Well, it leaves 'em feeling like a gigantic spiritual failure, that's where. And I'm sick of feeling like a spiritual failure. I had enough of that when I thought I would go to hell if I told a lie.
I think it's high time that we started letting people know that faith is all about losing oneself to find oneself. About thinking about other people instead of ourselves all the time. About raising that seratonin level every day by doing something that makes us feel really good, not just sated for the moment. This to me, brothers and sisters, is prosperity. It lines my heart, not my pocket, and it won't wear out, get too small when I gain weight, need fixin' or any of those pesky little chores that things require.