You have planted much, but have harvested little. You eat, but never have enough. You drink, but never have your fill. You put on clothes, but are not warm. You earn wages, only to put them in a purse with holes in it.
Of course its not just the Irish, but basically all the Western economies. The fact is, we (including myself) are locked into a way of life defined by consumption, which dooms us to making things, consuming them, yet always wanting more. The bottom line is that it does not satisfy, yet (it seems) that is all we know.
I am convinced that the biggest 'enemy' of Christian faith in the West is not other faiths (though they pose real issues), nor is it even hard secularism, but it is actually consumerism - a life defined by consumption.