Devotional for July 26, 2017: “Desperate?”

Imagine, during a conversation with a friend, you had this exchange:

Friend: I’m desperate to get a million dollars in the bank.

You: How much money do you have in the bank right now?

Friend: A million dollars.

You: (standing there with a confused look on your face, shocked into silence)

I’m thinking that your response to your friend would be something along the lines of, “If you already have a million dollars in the bank, why are you still desperate to have a million dollars in the bank?” And that would be an understandable response, right? It makes no sense to be desperate for something you already have.

Yet, the idea of a believer, a follower of Jesus, being desperate for God shows up multiple places: in songs and in things said by followers of Jesus. A follower of Jesus has no need to be desperate for God because that follower already has God indwelling him/her through the Holy Spirit and the nature of Christ. It makes no more sense for a follower of Jesus to be desperate for God than it does for a person with a million dollars in the bank to be desperate to have a million dollars in the bank.

Being desperate for God is the activity of someone who doesn’t already have God dwelling within him/her. It is an activity of someone who is religious and follows how religion says s/he should feel and be.

Remember the episode of the prophet Elijah going up against 450 prophets of Ba’al on Mount Carmel? (1 Kings 18) The 450 prophets were desperate for Ba’al to do something. So, they acted accordingly. They acted out their desperation. They had no choice to act out of desperation because they, and their god, were being put to the test. Elijah had no need to act desperately. He had no need to do the things that those 450 prophets did. He simply prayed and God responded. He knew his relationship with God because he had one.

So, as a follower of Jesus, there is no need for you to be desperate for God. He is already dwelling within you. He is already there. Stop thinking and acting like a desperate person who desires God but doesn’t already have His presence indwelling you.

Start acting like someone who already has that presence because you do.

Start thinking like someone who already has that presence because you do.

Starting talking like someone who already has that presence because you do.

Stop acting, thinking, and talking like a person who doesn’t already have that presence of God dwelling within him/her.

Rather, start focusing on what God has already given – His presence through the indwelling of the Holy Spirit – and the incredible and radical difference that makes on how you live and approach life.

There’s absolutely zero need to be desperate for the presence of God because it is something you already have. Anything, and I don’t care if it is a Christian song, or anyone who tells you something different is lying to you and has believed a lie him or herself.

Don’t be like that person. You have been set apart from having to be just like the religious who are desperate for the presence of God. You have been freed from that. Live in that freedom. Enjoy it. Relish it. Cherish it.

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