For weeks leading up to Christmas, I’ve been faced with the question of what I want. It’s not that so many people were looking to buy me presents, in fact, very few people even asked. But it’s the time of year when the focus of nearly every TV show, every ad, every blog post is on giving or getting just the right gifts. So I started to ask myself: What do I want?
I don’t think that’s been a very healthy question for me. Rather than looking at all the things I have, all the blessings I’ve already received, I began to consider what my life may be lacking. What don’t I have? What would make my life newer, better, faster? And somehow, searching for these holes, I managed to find them. They seem to glare like crazy–a beacon of how my life just isn’t what it could be, if only I had something else.
You gain a lot when you live a godly life. But you must be happy with what you have. We didn’t bring anything into the world. We can’t take anything out of it. If we have food and clothing, we will be happy with that. (I Timothy 6:6-8, NIrV)
It’s hard for me to believe sometimes that I wouldn’t actually be happier if I had more books or shoes or toys. Wouldn’t my life be easier or more comfortable if I had all these things I want? But, comfortable isn’t really Your purpose is it? You’re making me holy, and apparently that takes a lot of time stretching me out of my comfort zone, and that’s never easy.
Help me to recognize that the more things I have around me, the more tempted I am to focus on those rather than on You. Let the stuff in my life just be stuff. Stuff is incidental. It comes and goes and isn’t really very important in the scheme of things. But, God, You are always with me. I want You to be in the center of me–Lord of my life, and ruler over all my stuff. Thank You that You’re not willing to give me what I want when it interferes with what I need.