Sunday, February 28, 2010

Getting What You Want

Sometimes it’s not good to get what you ask for.

As a boy, a friend of mine loved to visit his big sister at the deli where she worked.  Sometimes she’d fix him a treat; one day it was a bagel with cream cheese.  He loved it.  On his next visit, hoping for the same treat, he asked his sister for “a bagel with sour cream”.  She looked at him quizzically and began to suggest that perhaps he meant cream cheese, but he was quite insistent on his order.  Eventually she toasted a bagel, topped it with sour cream and handed it to him.  His face scrunched into a grimace as he suddenly realized his mistake.  Humbled, he asked for a bagel with cream cheese.  

Sometimes getting what we ask for isn’t all it’s cracked up to be.  We insist that we want sour cream on our life’s bagels, only to finally get our request and discover that that wasn’t really what we wanted.  Sometimes getting what we’re asking for can leave a sour taste in our mouths.

The Bible is full of examples of people with gagging on their sour cream.  Just ask Jacob, scurrying into the night having snagged the birthright he’d never use. Or Samson, blind (literally) in his pursuit of Philistine pleasures. Or just ask David, finally having enjoyed the friend’s wife he’d been longing for.  Perhaps you can tell similar stories from your life:  times when you tried to force a pleasure or an achievement or make a purchase even though others questioned whether your choice was wise. 

God created us to be hungry--but for things that only He can satisfy.  What have you been hungry for lately?

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