Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Meeting Your Needs

            “But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus.”  (Philippians 4:19, KJV)

            We oftentimes use this verse to convince ourselves that God will give us what we “need.”  We “need” more money, a better job, more appreciation, more success, a better spouse, to seek revenge or dish out justice, a bigger home, a fancier phone, a better entertainment center, physical healing, etc. 
            And then, if we don’t get what we “need”,  our spirit gets crushed and our faith gets shaken up. 
            But does God always provide what we “need”?

            No!  But He does provide what we need.  And there is a big difference!
            And if He doesn’t provide it, we don’t need it!

            We think we “need” more money, but God knows what we really need is to learn to be faithful with the money we have, to spend more wisely, to trust that He will provide as needs come up, and to learn to tithe and be thankful and praise Him even when we have little.
            We think we “need” a better job or role to make us happier, but God knows we need to learn to work for Him and His glory with all of our heart and strength, no matter what position we are in, to focus on being a light to those around us, and to trust that He has a reason for putting us in the role or position that He did.  (And if we really do need a different job, we can trust that as we faithfully do the one we currently have and seek His guidance and watch for His leading, He will provide a better one when the time is right.  Until then, there are spiritual lessons that we need to learn while in our current position, instead of just despairing and doubting and growing bitter.)
            We think we “need” more appreciation or success, but God knows we need to learn humility, to reflect the glory back to Him, to be faithful to do our job no matter how much appreciation or success we get, to be more concerned with if we are doing what He wants us to do than if He is doing what we want Him to do, to remember that it’s all about Him, to serve instead of being served, to follow Him instead of trying to lead Him, to be okay when God puts us on the sidelines, to let God define "success" and to see things not with physical eyes but with spiritual eyes, and to trust that He has His plans and timing and that He will straighten out the path as we walk in obedience.
            We think we “need” a better spouse or that they “need” to change, but God knows we need to honor our vow to our current spouse, to learn to love them as He loves us, to focus on changing ourselves instead of trying to change them, to let go of bitterness, to pray for them, and to let God be our all and meet those “needs” that our spouse doesn’t.
            We think we “need” to dish out justice through revenge, but God knows we need to let go of unforgiveness and learn to fully and completely forgive as we have been forgiven, to trust that He is a righteous judge who will avenge all wrongs and make all things right again in the end, and to be more concerned with our standing before Him than other’s standing before us and more concerned with the plank in our own eye than the speck in someone else’s.
            We think we “need” a bigger home or fancier phone or better entertainment center, but God knows we need to learn to be genuinely thankful for what we do have, to learn to do without some things, to start thinking about others who are in need, to stop finding our worth in our possessions and stop living our lives trying to impress others, to get our priorities straight and stop storing up treasures on earth and start storing them in heaven, and to start enjoying the simple blessings that He has given us in His wonderful creation.  4,000 square feet, a 60-inch TV, and a fancy phone that does everything but make toast cannot compare with walks at sunset, growing a garden, spending time in the backyard with your family, or hugs from your children.
            We think we “need” physical healing, but God knows we need to learn to fully trust Him with our lives and our futures, to praise Him and glorify Him regardless of circumstances, to find His goodness wherever it may be found, to correct any misconceptions we have of Him, of ourselves, of prayer, of faith, etc. by meeting Him in His Word, to focus on the eternal and not the temporary, to learn just how sufficient His grace is, and to trust that He will eventually bring all the healing we need in eternity.
            We think we "need" a certain answer to prayer or a specific change before we can be happy or feel blessed, but God knows we need to learn to be content, to find our joy in Him, to be trustingly still before Him, to count our blessings, to believe that He always answers with the best answer, to cling to Him and trust that He loves us even when our heart hurts, and to know that He is good . . . all the time.  And all the time . . . He is good!

            If He didn’t provide it, we don’t need it!  And He does provides all that we do need.  We just need to have the eyes to see it!