Our oldest son came down with a bad case of the “I want I want I want”s the other day at the mall.
He wanted Legos, he wanted to stay and watch a video at the Disney store, he wanted a Pez dispenser shaped like a semi truck, he wanted candy, he wanted gum.
I rolled my eyes and plunked him back in the stroller.
“You can’t have everything,” I told him. “You already have so much.”
As soon as the words came out of my mouth, I glanced over at the See’s Candy store.
“Oh wow,” I said. “I want some of that.”
As we made a beeline for our free samples, it hit me: my inner four-year-old is alive and well. There are plenty of things I want. Not things I need, mind you, like food and shelter and enough clothes to keep me warm and dry, but want. Waaaaaaant. WANT.
The expensive mascara. The name-brand jeans. That book everyone’s been raving about. A better mattress. A new car.
Do I need any of these things? No, I do not. Yet I have the gimmes just as bad as my preschooler, I just know how to hide mine a little bit better.
But do you know what? Our desire for things is not all bad. In fact, God has created us to love beauty, comfort, and newness.
Now wait a second. I’m not saying we’re hard-wired to need a new Lexus or even a free chocolate at See’s.
What I am saying is that God has created us with drive and purpose to head toward something with passion. The key is to make sure that we are headed toward the right thing.
Mary had it right:
For the Mighty One has done great things for me—
holy is his name.
Faced with the daunting task of carrying a baby as an unmarried woman in 1st century Israel, Mary chose to look at God’s faithfulness to her instead of what she didn’t have.
Instead of saying, “Gosh, God, I hope you take care of me because I need an official husband and a decent place to birth your son, not to mention enough money to feed and clothe him for the next two decades…” Mary said, “The Mighty One has done great things for me.”
When Daryl and I face seasons of discontent, we pray over this verse from Mary’s song and ask each other what God has done for us. The list is long and incredible.
The Mighty One introduced us to one another in college.
The Mighty One provided for us in seminary.
The Mighty One has never failed to give us daily bread.
The Mighty One has gotten us through dark and difficult days.
The Mighty One gave us two incredible sons.
The Mighty One came and lived among us, died for us, rose for us, and will come again for us.
The list is infinitely longer, and it grows every day.
In a season of gimme, turn back to the enough.
The Mighty One has done great things for you, too.