by David Brenneman
What an interesting question. We all desire something. We often desire things that we think we want, only to find disappointment and discouragement. We find that the reality far and away isn't what we had hoped for.
Do you hold fast to this passage?
"Indeed, all who desire to live godly in Christ Jesus will be persecuted." 2 Timothy 3:12 NASB.
Might come across as strange way to think about it but there's truth in it. There has to be truth in it because God's Word is truth. We're going to face things like disappointment. We are going to face opposition to living Godly. The world is a self-centered, self-love type of world. The world has fought for against God since Cain killed his brother. Punishment for sin was proclaimed by God in the condemnation that came down upon sin entering the world. Man was told he would toil by the sweat of his brow all the days of his life. For most, the outward appearance of rich people is that somehow this has escaped them. But the reality is far from what's seen in public. Many documentaries exist on the shallow, hollow, empty lives of the rich. So in that it's attractive, it's frankly fraught with trials and tribulations. The Bible contains warnings concerning greed. Many warnings.
Desire is not in and of itself a bad thing. Coupled with godliness its a great thing. To desire to be Godly in Christ Jesus is to want to be Holy as God is Holy. 1 Peter 1:15-16 NASB "but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior; because it is written: “You shall be holy, for I am holy.”".
To desire what God wants is always a fantastic thing. To find your desires matching what God's wanting in your life is actually freeing. It's finding a peace and rest that the world cannot know apart from God.
We often cross the line in the use of desire and choose ungodly things to desire. What was meant by God to be a good thing we obsess about and can go down a road filled with being a lover of ourselves. We can find ourselves on many broken roads.
More broken roads are written here in 2 Timothy 3:2-8 NASB "For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, boastful, arrogant, slanderers, disobedient to parents, ungrateful, unholy, unloving, irreconcilable, malicious gossips, without self-control, brutal, haters of good, treacherous, reckless, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, holding to a form of godliness although they have denied its power; avoid such people as these."
These types of people Paul was warning Timothy about would be IN the Church. By no means is this a warning about people outside of the Church. 1 Corinthians 5:9-11 NASB "I wrote you in my letter not to associate with immoral people; I did not at all mean with the immoral people of this world, or with the covetous and swindlers, or with idolaters, for then you would have to go out of the world. But actually, I wrote to you not to associate with any so-called brother if he is an immoral person, or covetous, or an idolater, or a reviler, or a drunkard, or a swindler—not even to eat with such a one."
Desire often has gotten me into a great many troubles. Desire without forethought leads to many a grief. Proverbs says that with an abundance of counselors there is victory. Proverbs 11:14.
When we seek God first, we pray first, we start out on the right path. When we don't we show our folly quite well.
"But there's things that I want to do in life!" You think that I don't? The truth is that Christians have the work of the Father’s plan at heart first. Most desires of this world are intended distractions by Satan to keep that plan from happening. We indeed are to enjoy God's creation. We indeed are to enjoy His provision. We should not go too far in seeking what we want though. Because then it's quite possible to forget why we are here. The word obsession exists because people do it. Both in the Church and outside of it.
What do you desire? Do you desire to live Godly in Christ Jesus?
I admit to desires to create or invent things. To honestly try to do what others say can't be done. It's a fine line between success and pride.
Are you at all considering why you are in the part of the body of Christ in which He placed you?
"For the body is not one part, but many. If the foot says, “Because I am not a hand, I am not a part of the body,” it is not for this reason any less a part of the body. And if the ear says, “Because I am not an eye, I am not a part of the body,” it is not for this reason any less a part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole body were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? But now God has arranged the parts, each one of them in the body, just as He desired. If they were all one part, where would the body be? But now there are many parts, but one body. And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you”; or again, the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” On the contrary, it is much truer that the parts of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary; and those parts of the body which we consider less honorable, on these we bestow greater honor, and our less presentable parts become much more presentable, whereas our more presentable parts have no need of it. But God has so composed the body, giving more abundant honor to that part which lacked, so that there may be no division in the body, but that the parts may have the same care for one another. And if one part of the body suffers, all the parts suffer with it; if a part is honored, all the parts rejoice with it. Now you are Christ’s body, and individually parts of it." 1 Corinthians 12:14-27 NASB
So you have a divine purpose and a divine responsibility in Christ Jesus that is yours when you come to Christ for salvation.
So this thing about riches, we shouldn't seek them? My Dear Reader...if God so blesses, find out from Him why you have been so blessed. Look at the New Testament. Many people in that Church had riches. They used them to help any who had need. The more they did the more they were blessed. There are indeed some who know how to rightly manage finances. There's probably even more who don't really. It's quite possible that those blessed in such a way are meant to mentor those who aren't in order to bring about the righteous life that God desires. To learn a life that isn't fixated on wrong desires and decisions.
Look at your desires...where do you see them taking you? Where you spend your time, energy and effort shows your desires.
Look at how your life is being lived. Are you desiring what God wants and are repulsed by what repulses God?
Are you fulfilling your purpose in the body?
Are you looking to hear "Well Done!" from your Savior?
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