Made me think and smile.
How true. There can be a world of difference between what we want and what we need.
Some say our Wants exceed our Needs, meaning also that our Wants tend to be excesses whereas Needs are more basic, stripped down. But the visual above shows a different way of thinking about Wants and Needs.
Often, our Wants have to do with the lack of trouble… unpleasant things… knotty situations or difficult people… big goofups… Yet we realise (with age, experience and more than a few hard and humbling knocks) that some of these things we loved to Not Want turn out to be the very things we needed. They made/make us better, stronger, wiser and healthier persons. We may never want to return to that time of learning again, or never say it directly to the difficult person’s face, but if we were really honest about it, we’d be thankful for the unexpected blessings.
Thus, when I hear people say (or pray it myself!) – The Lord will provide for all your needs – I exhale with great comfort but tremble a little too. Eeps, what am I going to ‘need’ next… what shape and form will it take?! I know I’m a huge WIP (work-in-progress), and the Lord knows more than anyone about when, how and where to do the next phase of work :p Make no mistake about it – He’s a guy who keeps His promises and He’s said quite clearly that He’s begun a good work and will be faithful to complete it. (Phil 1:6)
So how does one pray? I’m still learning. I pray for God to purify my Wants. Line them up with what is on His heart. I pray for courage to face my Needs. For a spirit of thanksgiving, and humility to be a good student – whether the Needs bring sweetness or struggle. I pray for wisdom to know the difference between my Wants and Needs. I pray to be rested in Him – and abide where neither Want nor Need matter.