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Why not getting what you want is good

You can do a quick Internet search for “get what you want” and find thousands of items that will help you, well, “get what you want.” There are numerous good suggestions. Be specific in what you want. Expect to get what you want. Ask for it. Be persistent at trying to get it. Visualize it.

What do you want? What do you want from life? What do you want in your relationships? What do you want from God?

There are many ways to ask this question, and it is not necessarily wrong to seek certain things. However, as those who seek to follow Jesus Christ, the caution is that too often our wants are not the same as God’s wants. What we think we need to have a happy life, are not always what God feels we need. We might want to turn and walk away from a situation, and God might want us to talk it out some more.

16 I say be guided by the Spirit and you won’t carry out your selfish desires. 17 A person’s selfish desires are set against the Spirit, and the Spirit is set against one’s selfish desires. They are opposed to each other, so you shouldn’t do whatever you want to do. (Galatians 5)

Over the last couple of years, verse 17 here in Galatians 5 really speaks to me. I at times will paraphrase it, saying something along the lines of, “if you are always doing what you want then God isn’t God, you are.”

Is life about what you want?

Last Sunday we brought up these verses found in 1 John 2.

15 Don’t love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in them. 16 Everything that is in the world—the craving for whatever the body feels, the craving for whatever the eyes see and the arrogant pride in one’s possessions—is not of the Father but is of the world. 17 And the world and its cravings are passing away, but the person who does the will of God remains forever.

Again, focusing on what we want will often draw us away from God.

So, brothers and sisters, because of God’s mercies, I encourage you to present your bodies as a living sacrifice that is holy and pleasing to God. This is your appropriate priestly service. 2 Don’t be conformed to the patterns of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds so that you can figure out what God’s will is—what is good and pleasing and mature. (Romans 12)

It is not supposed to be about what we want. It is supposed to be about what God wants. So, where is your focus today? Are you more concerned about your wants, or on what God wants?

Here is what we often miss. This is huge. God wants something even better for your life than you do. It is good to want what God wants!


Pastor Matt

(All scripture cited above from Common English Bible Copyright © 2011)

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