Desire is such a powerful emotion.
It is something that seems to live inside and when it is so strong it feels as though your whole world will lose meaning if you can’t have that one thing…
Desire is a very real thing.
When I think of desire, I tend to think of something that I want— that I shouldn’t have. And yet, sometimes our desires are born out of a place of innocence. Sometimes we desire things that aren’t necessarily bad for us, but that we need to wait for.
Some desires aren’t a bad thing, but we still need patience.
I am convinced of this: Our fascination for that one thing is only bad when that yearning overpowers our desire for God.
If we’re not careful, our desires can lead to greed, selfishness, and discontentment.
As Christians, I think we know this. We understand that our one desire should be God and that we need to not want anything else.
But what happens when it’s not? How do we refocus our eyes on Him?
When our desire has taken us too far, it focuses our eyes on the future.
It leads us to expect great things up ahead—which is great! But it also distracts us from the now...and it creates discontentment in our hearts.
So those of us who are prone to things like wanderlust, daydreaming, restlessness, thinking big and dwelling too long on our desires—we need to learn to be present.
We need to learn how to focus on what is right in front of us and find the beauty in the now.
I know this is so hard when your desires are so strong. Your ability to gaze into the future is a gift, but sometimes it can disconnect you with what is presently all around you.
What are you missing because you are too focused on what lies ahead? What is that desire that you spend so much time waiting, distracting you from?
Sometimes I am so fearful that I am going to miss what God has for me. Something might come my way and I’m going be too discombobulated to see it and because of that, my whole future will be ruined. This fear leads me to think about the future and what kind of mistakes I am going to make along the way.
The panic and frantic thoughts that my desires instill in me, make me realize that I maybe haven’t surrendered my future to God like I thought I had.
So this week I had an epiphany.
Dang, I love when that happens. It’s less of an epiphany and more like God slapping me in the face—graciously of course ;)
This week I was running around, back and forth, up and down and I felt like a rubber band being pulled in every direction.
Because of this, I neglected several important things, including prayer.
I am painfully aware of the fact that prayer is not my strong suite in my relationship with God. And here is what my epiphany was: Of course prayer isn’t my strength! Prayer is supposed to slow us down and be present.
AND THAT’S LIKE MY LEAST FAVORITE THING!!!
Literally, my prayers are a lot like this:
“Hey God, thanks so much for today. The sun was out, and it was so nice and I got to see friends and had great conversation and...shoot, did I leave my keys in class? Where are my keys??? Man, that class was weird today...so long...I wonder when my assignment for that class is due. And dangit! Did I forget to submit that other assignment!? Oh, no...I did it. Yeah. Thank goodness…Wait? Am I still praying? Did I say amen yet? Darn it! Sorry, God. So like I was saying…”
Yep, it takes about an hour for me to get a solid prayer in.
Because my mind is always so focused on what’s next. During my busy week I felt God constantly tugging on my heart, and honestly, it breaks my heart a little to share this, like little whispers, He says to me:
What about me? Christy? Christy, I’m still here…
And He is so good and He is so patient. Always waiting for me to talk to Him without any distractions.
My mind works in the future-tense. “Someday I’ll travel the world,” “Someday, I’ll have the perfect job,” “Someday I’ll be good at praying…”
It is sometimes so hard for me to be present because my heart yearns for adventure and the day-by-day seems so mundane.
But I forget that in order to get to my future, I need to work for it NOW. I have to let my desires drive me in the present and I have to stop making them race my mind back and forth from the present to the future.
Jesus knows my desires. He is very aware of what I want and what I need. I do not need to worry.
And neither do you.
There’s this beautiful song by Steffany Gretzinger whose lyrics remind me that I owe God my present self.
Call my name and I will answer
All you need is here inside my arms
Just breathe and you’ll be safe and sound with me
Cuz no one knows you better than me
And no one’s been a better friend…
Doesn’t that break your heart? I mean think about that for a second...no one knows you better than Jesus.
And here I am waiting for my future that will never come unless I learn to live in the present.
What are you waiting for?
That perfect someone?
That perfect job?
That perfect life experience?
Let me tell you, life is happening right now all around you. Adventure happens every day.
But you are always going to be just a little discontent if you let your heart idolize the future.
Learn to live in the present. Spend time with your Father...He loves you so much. The more you spend time with Him, the more peace will invade your mind where desires once lived.
And then your heart that was once desperate and anxious for the future, will be content in your Father’s arms.