In this life, we have so many options. So many choices. So many things we can buy, eat, drink, wear – so many things to have. It’s a consumer-driven world. The choices that the world is offering us is exceedingly many, in order for us to indulge, and buy. For what? Well, the world tells us – for us to be happy.
This entry has been inspired by the book “The Journey of Desire” By John Eldredge. It has also been inspired by a recent talk with one of my dgroup-mates. To you and to your ‘other half’, I dedicate this entry.
The Devil will give you a lot of options
Then Jesus was led by the Spirit into the desert to be tempted by the devil. After fasting forty days and forty nights, he was hungry. The tempter came to him and said, “If you are the Son of God, tell these stones to become bread.”Jesus answered, “It is written: ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’” – Matthew 4:1-4
We as human beings are hungry. All of us have appetites. Appetite is not bad – it is not a sin. But it has to be controlled. This verse tells us that Jesus was hungry – as much hungry as you and I could be when we haven’t eaten for 40 days and nights. Then came the Devil tempting Him saying ‘you don’t have to stay hungry. There are options… Tell these stones to become bread.’
At this point, Satan wasn’t lying. There really are options. Jesus could’ve really turned those stones to bread. And much more, Jesus could’ve turned the other stones into Chicken, Hamburger, Pizza and perhaps even a cool glass of Royal Milk tea. The options increase the more we are willing to trust ourselves and what we can do – rather than trust God.
Where is the lie then?
The lie is that the options will bring you what you most deeply want and need. And once you believe that lie – what you thought could bring you happiness and fulfillment instantly turns into an idol. Jesus responded “Man does not LIVE on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.” – Jesus knew what LIFE was all about. He knew what it was to really live.
Bread and water will fill you up. It will renew your strength. But Jesus knew that He was looking for something else. He knew that turning these stones into bread can quickly divert his attention from needing and wanting God (His mission in the desert) into needing and wanting bread.
There are so many options that the Devil will use to cover up that which you really yearn for. Often, that which you really yearn for is where God placed His purpose for you.
You have to check that desire within the desire
These options will kindle and attract your desire. And once it does, it often blinds you of asking yourself ‘why’. Why do you desire to buy that iPhone 5 as soon as it comes out? Why do you desire to get a ‘yes’ from that beautiful girl in red? Why do you desire to watch pornography?
Think: Do you really just want to see a girl naked? Or do you want to do it because the world says you’re more of a man when you do? Doesn’t it mean that what you really desire is a better sense of masculinity and not the girl herself?
What is that desire behind and within your desire? You have to examine it. If you don’t, the Devil will start drowning you in options so that you’ll just keep saying ‘yes’, ‘I want it’, and soon, ‘I need it’.
Check your heart. Examine yourself. Renew your mind. Know God’s Word so that your options won’t be as many as the Devil gives you.
“But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” – Matthew 7:14
Finding real life doesn’t have to go through so many options. In fact, it is very narrow. There is only one true, deep desire that will fill you up.
Our purpose in life is to glorify God. Live it out. Only then will you be really happy, fulfilled, and satisfied.