There are times where I’m tempted to buy into the lie that I need one thing or another to be complete. It can be a relationship, a certain position, a dollar amount in the bank, a number on the scale, etc. Personally, I believe it’s okay that I want certain things in life. After all, there is tremendous blessing and freedom in financial independence. Taking care of myself physically adds to my life’s quality. A great career brings a sense of satisfaction, and a great relationship is one of the most rewarding experiences life can offer. Where I can get tripped up is in thinking those things in and of themselves are enough.
The best example I can think of with this is my children. I love them deeply! My life is richer and better for having them. They have brought out qualities in me, both good and bad, that I wouldn’t have discovered any other way. They have helped me to grow in my character, my selflessness, and in my ability to love unconditionally. Having them in my life has made me a better person, and they bring me great joy. But my kids can’t “complete” me; they can’t entirely fulfill me, nor is it fair to try to make them do so. I still need to be happy in who I am and how I live my life both with—and without—my children around.
I’ve learned being surrendered about the things I want in life doesn’t mean giving up on my dreams. It doesn’t mean letting go of all I desire. Instead, it means letting go of the timing, and trusting that if I really do need it, God will give it to me.
God’s love and care for us is extraordinary! He wants only good things for us. He wants everyone to see, “that his banner over [us] declares his love,” (SS 2:4). And as I sit under His banner, sometimes waiting patiently and sometimes taking very intentional steps toward where He’s calling me to go, I experience the most priceless gift from being in His presence: true, abiding love. Beside Him I find peace, joy and a sense of worth that cannot be taken from me no matter my circumstance, or what I do or don’t have. I feel fulfilled.
Jesus tells us, “Would any of you give your hungry child a stone, if the child asked for some bread? Would you give your child a snake if the child asked for a fish? As bad as you are, you still know how to give good gifts to your children. But your heavenly Father is even more ready to give good things to people who ask,” (Matthew 7:9-11). God wants to bless us. He doesn’t want us to be afraid to ask!
Yet note what comes right before this passage in verse 8: “Everyone who asks will receive. Everyone who searches will find. And the door will be opened for everyone who knocks.” Asking, seeking and knocking involve action on my part, an intentional decision to reach toward God and His timing instead of just going it on my own in whatever manner seems best to me. The more I’ve learned to do so, the more I’ve received His abundant blessings. And let me tell ya – His blessings are always worth the wait!
For Further Thought: Jeremiah 29:11-12 tells us, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord. “Plans to prosper you, and not to harm you. Plans to give you a hope and a future.” What is something you really want in your life? When are you most tempted to not trust God to bless you with it? Think of something you can do in those moments to trust more deeply in God’s timing and His answers.