It is difficult to ask for what we want or what we think we need. Asking makes us uncomfortable, sometimes makes us feel guilty or ashamed. Asking is one of most vulnerable things we can do. Yet, we see throughout the gospels that Jesus asked all the time. Particularly, he asked questions to challenge his hearers or cause them to think more deeply about issues. Jesus often used questions as teaching moments, and those questions were strategically placed to address a spiritual condition, soul cry, or even a physical need in the public square.
Continue reading “Learning to Ask for What You Need”
God Has More
Continuing reflections from yesterday’s devotion, I would suggest that if our motives and desires are simply to get more stuff or increase our pleasures without consideration for how those desires affect other people in our lives, then the motives and desires are probably not pure.
One thing I continue to learn is: God does want us to enjoy this life he has given us on earth. The Apostle Paul reveals this truth to Timothy when he writes:
Command those who are rich [by the way: that’s most Americans according to the world’s standard] in this present world not to be arrogant nor to put their hope in wealth, which is so uncertain, but to put their hope in God, who richly provides us with everything for our enjoyment. Command them to do good, to be rich in good deeds, and to be generous and willing to share (1 Tim 6:17-18 [NIV]).
Continue reading “Coffee Talk Part II: I Want More…”
How Coveting Reveals Our Pride
Last Sunday, my pastor closed his “Ten Commandments” Series with a sermon entitled, “The Secret to Being Content.” His take-way: “The secret to contentment is to be satisfied with God and whatever He has or has not provided.” In summary: God does condemn the sin of covetousness (Ex. 20:17) and God also provides a cure.
The sin of covetousness leads us to do things we never thought we would do. We can look throughout the Bible to see the stories of those who fell as a result of this sin: Aiken took what God said not to take (Joshua 7), David took somebody else’s wife (2 Sam 11-12), while Ananias and Sapphira coveted the same praise of another servant so they lied about their acts (Acts 5:1-11). I am no different than any of these people of God, and neither are you. I have noticed that throughout scripture and in life, the sin of covetousness always leads to conflict that negatively impacts our relationships with other people.
Continue reading “Coffee Talk: I Want It and I Want It Now!”