Thursday, April 21, 2011

What does it take to feel desperate?

Standing on the glass floor at the CN Tower in Toronto certainly gave me a feeling of desperation! Fearfully standing with a camera pointing down, I was reassuring myself that the floor must have been tested countless ways; at least I had hoped so! Because the material I was standing on was transparent, and I could see where in fact I was already moments before, gave me a very clear picture of the reality (height) I was at!

My situation didn’t change, just my view of it.

The title of this entry is a continuation of my thoughts from a response to my friends blog entry about our prayer lives, and the question that was asked, what does it really take to become more involved in prayer with our heavenly Father?

My answer to the question is simply one word: Desperation

I pray at times a very fearful prayer; whatever it takes Father, make me like Jesus. If it is in God’s will to remove from me my family, my house, my job, my health, or other things I often cling to in this world so that He can make me like Jesus, so be it. I certainly do not wish it, and dwelling on it can fill me with fear, but He knows what is best for me; He knows what I need.

However, I should not have to lose those things precious to me to become desperate for God. While it certainly may seem more difficult to feel desperate for God in a situation when I have my physical and emotional needs met, it’s something I must seek. Maslow may feel that self-actualization is at the top of our need pyramid, however I feel that self-denial and complete surrender to Christ is where the pyramid needs to lead. Now one may say it’s a game of semantics and that my self-actualization actually comes from complete surrender to Christ, as that is what completes me. However I still need to retain the fundamental truth that culture, society, and “human nature” are not my guides; I don’t wish to fit a mold, or certainly not one that society creates.

I should expect persecution, but I should not have to be persecuted before I become desperate.
I should expect to lose many things in this world for His sake, but I should not have to lose them to become desperate.
I should expect fiery trials to come my way, but I should not have to experience them before I become desperate.

I can have much, but still be desperate for Christ.
I can have little, but still be desperate for Christ. 
I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through him who strengthens me. (Philippians 4:12-13 ESV) 
A verse that is often taken out of context; Paul has learned that in whatever situation (having much, or having little) that the secret of facing those things is Christ. Christ doesn’t promise prosperity for following Him, in fact He promises quite the opposite. However there are likely to be times of plenty, along with times of need, and in both of those cases the secret to success is Christ Himself.

Father, teach me that while You are in control, and You give and take away, that I need not wait to lose something to feel desperate for You. Call me Father, and let me continue to feel a longing for You, a longing that can only be satisfied by communion with You. We are but pilgrims in this world; children of the Most High called to be Your hands and feet to reach out to a world in need. May we feel the longing to be home, yet meanwhile joyfully and eagerly use our time here to spread Your message of love! Draw me near to You father … I want to be desperate for You!


Link to my friend's blog, The War Room: What does it take?


Wayne said...

Good stuff Matt! I think one of the things that will make us desperate is a radical confrontation with the truth, which comes from unpacking the Word of God and its impact on our lives. The truth is, in our own strength we can do nothing of positive spiritual impact, but through Christ we can do all things. And God delights in using us, us working WITH HIM, for His glory. But it is His Word and our confrontation with it that will draw us into the mindset of desperation - I think this is what the Holy Spirit does as we hear and read the Word of God...

StrongNHim said...

Haven't heard from you in a while, so I wanted to check and make sure all is well. I know you had mentioned the wife being prego...?


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