After endlessly pestering my mother at the grocery checkout line with my “I wants” for candy and other treats as a child, her patient reply was always, “you don’t need that.” So the next time I stood in that tempting grocery checkout line, I changed my tactic to “I need that candy.” However, chuckling under her breath, she still didn’t budge.
I’m always cognizant and reminded again and again how blessed I am when I return from traveling to other countries outside the U.S. where much of the population survives on comparatively less and live on what they need and rarely get what they want. Statistics tell us that most of the world population survives on about $1.25 per day.
In our “not enough” culture, how do we actually get more? My mother’s early wisdom taught me to stop striving for wants and start looking at what I only needed. I need God first and foremost. I need Him in every aspect of my life so I first choose to seek Him. Where is that? I find God in nature that He’s created, I find him in the prayers I pray, but my favorite place and most importantly I find Him in the Word of God – the Bible.
The Word of God matures hearts and shifts our minds from present thoughts in the abyss of wants to a place of contentment where God is. The Bible said that God would provide for all our needs, not our wants in Philippians 4:19. When seeking something from God we must also remember to begin to ask with the right motives and righteous requests. James 4:3 says, “When you ask, you do not receive, because you ask with the wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures.” (NIV).
When we can shift our attitude and choose to focus on what we have and not what we don’t wonderful things begin to change in our lives. Peace suddenly abounds. And in our culture that keeps telling us, we never have enough and we need more the only way to turn off that constant noise is to shift our thinking. Because the truth is, we’ll never have enough. Even Paul tells us that he had to “learn” in Philippians 4:11, to be content.
Examine your motivation and whether what you’re asking is for your pleasure or what you really need? Next time you stand in that tempting place, consider well and choose to ask for the right stuff. The lasting stuff.