5.25.2010

Meditations on Desire, Part 4

I would recommend catching up on this multi-part series on desire if you haven't read the previous posts. You can start here.

With the idea established that we should pray for the things we desire, let me present an example that might illustrate things more clearly. Here is what goes on in my mind often:
  • I want to begin a relationship with a godly young woman with the main intention of seeking marriage.
  • I am hesitant when this desire meets my mind. I don't really know why this happens. Perhaps I think that desiring such a thing is of a lower order in the "important things to pray for" category. I have a hunch that this hesitation is unbiblical.
  • Naturally, I should test my desires to see if they are right or wrong ( James 4:3 ).
    If we are all beggars as Luther wrote in his last hours, and we really can claim nothing of our own, we cannot keep our own hearts beating nor can we make the sun rise tomorrow, then should I not take this into consideration as I want a godly future wife? I certainly cannot make her my own or purchase her (maybe I could where shotgun weddings are commonplace). I have nothing I can call my own! Perhaps I could do no wrong in asking for a wife, provided the motives are not sinful. Perhaps it is good and in accord with the biblical nature of prayer that I should ask for things that I do not have which I want.

    Let me offer a brief prayer of what I have been praying to God regarding these things. I leave a blank for the thing for which we desire.

    Father God, giver of all good things, you know that I am a creature of desires. Foremost, please make my desire for you greater and greater with each turn of the Earth. Show me the good things that you give God. Grant me the Holy Spirit, for this is the greatest thing that you give to sinful man. Purify my desires so that when I desire things auxiliary to you they may ultimately be for your glory and my good in Jesus. I ask for _________ . Good Father, if it pleases you to give me this thing, please grant it to me for my joy and your glory. Give me patience while I wait on your loving hand. If my request is not to be fulfilled as I see it, may I know and live in the truth that you are all sufficient and more than enough to make me live a contented live in thee. In the name of the Savior in whom I find all my Amens.

    10 comments:

    1. thanks for this post. God bless you.

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    2. You are welcome anonymous. I hope to offer some application on how to move forward from simply asking ourselves these questions about desire in the near future. Stay tuned.

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    3. that is an awesome prayer. you wrote it? its one of those prayers i could fine in an old prayer book. Desire has been one of those things lingering in my heart and mind for a good 8 months or so. your posts have helped me understand what my true desire should be and how to pray in the knowledge that god will grant my request for peace and all the other goodies the Holy Spirit gives.

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    4. Indeed, Courtney. That is a really beautiful, submissive prayer.

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    5. there is nothing wrong with asking God, if it is His will, that He would bless you with godly wife. He did not create us to be alone and it definitely is not uncommon for us to long for a lifelong companion in Him, He created us to have that need.

      Beautiful prayer =]

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    6. This comment has been removed by the author.

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    7. Yes, that is a prayer I wrote. I choose my words carefully and I hope that it might point to Jesus as the one who is in control of meeting our utmost desires which truly can only be fulfilled in him.

      I think I am still working through this and trying to figure out how to think through our desires in a terribly gospel-centered manner. I have seen people discuss topics of parenting, marriage, and other life issues in a manner that helps immensely because the counsel they issue is indeed centered around Jesus and grace. I choose the word "grace" very carefully here.

      Expect a (hopefully) more progressing exploration on how to think through desire and how to actually have desire in a God glorifying manner.

      Additionally, I really appreciate the comments on this site so far and the some of you who are repeat commenters and readers. You keep me going!

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    8. Oh, and I deleted that one comment. It was my own. I hate typos. :-)

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    9. I know that this is an old post and you are probably onto other topics.
      I wanted to challenge you to think about your singleness as as gift rather than a punishment. Instead of imagining all that you could do when you are married, think about all that you can do when you are single.
      It is not some evil punishment (like so many of us Christians have come to believe) to be single ("I am not good enough, Why doesn't he/she like me, That could be me on that altar), but singleness is a temporary calling, a time in your life that you might not ever have again. For example: other callings can be being a student, to live in America, to be a father or a wife. They are temporary. Like Christ said, in heaven, we will not be married; but be like angels.
      Also, remember that being single is not part of your identity. Your identity is with Christ and to follow the Lord's perfect will. Your identity never changes when your relationship status does; but your calling does change throughout your life.

      Reply if you have any questions and I hope that this is clear.

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    10. In reply to Anonymous (who posted on June 11, 2010 1:41 AM)...

      Excellent words and thank you so much for being candid with such advice. What you are saying has indeed crossed my mind often and I thank God for that because I know of many peers who do not think this way. (If that sounds like I am tooting my own horn, I'm not trying to. God gets the glory for changing my mind.)

      I think the thought of singleness as a gift first crossed my mind when I hear a Piper sermon on that topic. He drew from the latter chapters of Isaiah where it says that the eunuchs will receive a "name better than sons and daughters"...but I digress. (But really, that was the beginning of my realization that singleness IS a gift.) It seems I have generally accepted this as true and a good thing, but the honest problem comes when I try to apply this truth to my life.

      Hence, this is why I appreciate your reminders of the easily forgotten blessings of singleness.

      If I were to summarize my position now it would be like this:
      - I am content in singleness.
      - I desire a wife and am growing in patience.
      - I would like to reflect more on this topic and see my faith increase in God.

      Thanks for the good comments everyone! You make my blogging worth it. :-)

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