Contentedly Discontent

C.S. Lewis once said in The Weight of Glory, and Other Addresses,

“It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. We are half-hearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”

Consider what you’re asking God for right now. A better job? More money? A special someone? Children? Healing?

God just worked a minor miracle in my and Leah’s lives. I won’t go into details, since it was a healing miracle involving her, but it was an answer to prayer for both of us, something we’d been praying for for months now. We’ve also been praying for God to bring in money for us as we start our new life together, to bless the foundling ministry He’s given me, and for other things.

And yet how small are all of these things compared with Him!

In the Old Testament, the high priest had to abstain from enjoying his wife for several days, wash his clothes and himself, perform several sacrifices, carry in a special offering, and wear special clothes to come into God’s presence. And he could only do that once a year. If even one thing was done incorrectly, that priest would die, the bells around his tunic would stop jingling, and other priests would pull his corpse out by a rope attached to his ankles. God’s presence was so strong that any evil died instantly.

Now, after Jesus’ sacrifice for us, we can enter into God’s presence whenever we want. He may not descend in a cloud of glory, but He is the same God now as he was back then, the same God He’ll always be. And you can enter His presence without all the sacrifices and rituals because God views you as spotless through Jesus’ sacrifice. He views you as His son or daughter. He wants you to come before Him.

Imagine having the relationship of your dreams with someone impossibly attractive, smart, funny, confident, and who perfectly matches your personality. Now picture yourself not wanting to get to know this person, but instead asking if you can have a bowl of cereal before you go off on your merry way. It sounds crazy, but that’s what we do when we seek God’s blessings instead of God Himself. When we get these blessings, we’re happy, even though a treasure beyond our human imagination is still waiting for us.

I believe that we are called to be content in whatever happens to us on earth, that we should be able to sing in the prison of our trials like the apostles did. But I also believe that God wants us to never be satisfied, that He always wants us to hunger after Him. There’s always more of Him to discover, more of Him to know, more of Him to be wildly passionate about.

Leah and I are taking the day off from each other Wednesday. Just a time for us to relax, spend a little more time in the Word and in prayer, and for her to enjoy her family and friends before we’re married and we disappear for a few months. Though we’ll only go about 44 hours without seeing each other, I’m going to miss her and she’ll miss me. Why? Because we’re never satiated with each other. We never get to the point where we’re full of each other and ready to part ways. We’re madly in love and even when we’re not deepening our relationship or sharing secrets, we’re enjoying each other’s presence.

That’s how we’re meant to be with God. Not always asking for things, not chastising ourselves and begging for forgiveness all the time, not praying for guidance every time we’re in His presence, but just spending at least some of our time seeking Him. Always looking to know Him better. Falling ever more deeply in love with our Father.

I’d like to challenge you this week to spend at least five minutes a day in prayer, not asking God for anything at all or even praising Him, but just seeking to know Him better. He’s better than anything He can give you.

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