I have never bought a lottery ticket. The advertisements paint a picture of having all one’s dreams come true. I know that the jackpots keep growing despite my failure to purchase. I have a problem with lotteries for a number or reasons, but basically I refuse to believe that hope is something to buy or sell.
Lotteries are not the only vendors of “hope.” I’m beginning to see loyalty and rewards programs, even prizes printed on paper coffee cups in much the same light. We no longer buy something for the sake of that item—we also want to buy the hope of getting something more. Points, air miles or free gifts have become one more factor in our decisions of when and how to make purchases. These programs feed my human tendency to desire material things and to expect things to provide for spiritual needs.
“This is a trustworthy saying that deserves full acceptance (and for this we labour and strive), that we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Saviour of all men, and especially of those who believe.” 1 Timothy 4:9-10