Friday, 5 July 2013

Do we really know what we want?

The latest thing on starting your baby on solid foods seems to be, letting your baby choose (within reason) what they eat and how much of it. My problem is, my baby’s CHOICE seems to be to eat the high chair and leave the food...

Sometimes it seems to me, when left to our own devices, we don’t always know what it is we want. Or we want things that ultimately won’t make us happy.

Proverbs 1 talks about evil men who are so desperate to get what they want that they will steal and kill to get it. But actually the things they think will make them happy don’t sound so very far from that of the ordinary person:

We shall find all precious goods, we shall fill our houses with plunder,” (vs 13) they say.

Who among us can say we’ve never wanted some material object that we thought would make us happy?

And how often is it the thing we thought would make us happy turns out not to in the end? From the bowl of tagliatelle we ordered and and then wished we’d chosen the beef, to the woman we left our wife and children for and then regretted it, human beings often don't seem to know what they really want.

Back in Proverbs 1, we read the fate of the wicked men who sought happiness in stolen wealth.

Such are the ways of everyone who is greedy for unjust gain; it takes away the life of its possessors” (vs19).

They don't find the happiness they were looking for, in fact it causes their downfall.

What are you looking to to make you happy? Is it the love of a partner? Is it money? Maybe just a holiday? Do you ever sin to try and make yourself happy?

Pursuing happiness seems to be many people's reason to live, and yet life is about so much more than that. What is the point of a life spent in the pursuit of your own desires, when you could have spent your life helping others, making the world a better place, serving God?

A life spent putting God first and yourself and other people second, the bible says, can actually be the route to contentment. Not uninterrupted happiness, not a easy ride day-in-day-out, but a life of contentment.

As Paul wrote:
I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength. (Philippians 4:12-13)

After his conversion, Paul didn't waste his time chasing after his own happiness, looking for wealth or prestige. He found his happiness in God's plans and desires. When you seek God's plans for your life, above every other desire you have, the bible says that Jesus can give us peace and contentment in every circumstance. 

So, are you sure you know what it is you want?


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