Thursday, 4 August 2011

Straightening wires

Reading Max Lucado's wonderful little book 'Travelling Light for Mothers', based on Psalm 23, I read about 'wants'. Max reminds us that many of our 'wants' - a better job, a new house, a slimmer figure, perhaps children - or more children - are just that: wants. And he tells the story of a man who had 'lost everything' - yet he had not lost his faith, his character nor his salvation. 
I confess to having felt somewhat smug when I have read this list, or other similar lists in the past. I have no problem recognising material 'wants'. Yes, sometimes I battle with desiring more financial security, for myself or my children. Yes, I often battle with desiring a slimmer figure or more elegant furnishings. But I do recognise that they are just material 'wants' and pale into insigificance in the light of eternal things. I nod enthusiastically when I read what Jesus said: "Take care! Protect yourself against the least bit of greed. Life is not defined by what you have, even when you have a lot." or hear Paul's declaration that 'godliness with contentment is great gain', as he warns about becoming obsessed with money.
Yet, I am greedy. Not particularly for financial or material things - that's mainly an ongoing battle which results from being 'in the world, but not of it'. But I am greedy for emotional 'things'.
I hanker after happiness
I crave approval..
I long for praise.

I desire peaceful relationships
I yearn for harmony

I want restored relationships
I want

Now, is this really necessary?  Must I have relationships that work, that are comfortable, in which there is very little or no conflict? 
The answer, in some ways, is no. I can survive if not all relationships are good and 'perfect'. I will still be able to eat, drink, sleep, work, pray...hmmm, pray...

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