I want it Now!

Posted on May 9, 2010

I spend a lot of time with dissatisfied people.  It seems an odd way to spend my time, but if I didn’t do this I might be alone a lot.  Professionally, the dissatisfied seek me out.  Personally, I know few people who are truly content right where they are.  I mean those who seriously examine their lives and remain at peace with all that they see.

I am convinced one of the most elusive aspects of freedom, is the ability to be free when you are…not…quite…free…yet.  It sounds a bit contradictory, but in many peoples lives this is the thing that holds them back.

They are waiting for their breakthrough.  The moment life can finally begin as they have imagined it.  The golden ticket, the bailout, the promotion, or finally the recognition they have deserved all these years.  They are waiting for the One Thing that will finally make life work.

I wonder what it is?  This mechanism inside of us that keeps us waiting, not just waiting, pursuing.   This part of our heart that believes it will not be satisfied without the Elusive Thing.  Whatever name we might place on this mechanism in our souls, I am convinced it is not our friend.

I suppose that at it’s root, it is not such a bad thing.  We are made for more than we currently have.  The world we inhabit is only a shadow, or a poor imitation of the one for which we have been made and destined.  To be fully satisfied here and now may also be a trap.  It is the other side of this self-same trap that I am trying to describe.

You know…the part of you that insists, something that exists on this unsatisfying planet has the ability to finally and fully satisfy.  You become convinced that the new car, those last ten pounds, rock hard abs, or the latest The Rocket Summer CD is the final piece of the puzzle that will allow your soul to rest and be still.  (OK, given, the Rocket Summer CD kind of comes close…).

But to finally rest, we must at some point recognize that it is the lack of rest itself that keeps us unsettled, not the lack of the object of our pursuit.  Learning to balance the “we were  meant to live for so much more” with the “I can be content in all things” is a great leap into this life called Freedom.  If today, I am again denied that temporary desire, do I inwardly rage, or do I rest in the assurance that my Father who is in Heaven knows what I need, (and when I need it) and that He cares for me?

What I think we do not see with clarity, is that the unrest, the inward rage, is often the first step down some internal slippery slope of resentment, jealousy, fear, or even self-contempt. A downward slide that ultimately fuels a fire much hotter than just the wishing that I could have a (place object of desire here) . We come to equate the fact that our imagined breakthrough moment has not come with the idea that perhaps God has forgotten me, or worse, that He remembers but doesn’t care.

So today I desire.  I will desire fully.  John Eldredge says that desire is the central essence of our lives.  It is the internal mechanism that is designed to draw us magnetically back to our Creator.  It is the oft-hijacked mechanism that drives us toward various objects of desire.  Our desires are an essential, if not the essential element of being one who is created in the image of God.  I will not despise the fact that I desire.  But neither will I be mastered by it.

If today the object(s) of my desire remain out of reach I will also trust.  I will trust that the fact that I did not get my way, does not mean that God has been thwarted in His attempt to make me happy.  I will trust that today God intends to give me satisfaction today, through some means other than feeding the particular appetite I have today.

Today I will both desire deeply and trust fully.  I think if I do, I can be free right now!


  • Cindy Snyder

    It gives me comfort to know that the Freedom pastor at Gateway, who has listened to God so faithfully and helped others to find their own freedom, deals with this struggle just like I do. Your transparency is greatly appreciated and is just part of what makes the ministry God has you working in so incredible.

    Thank you!

    P.S. This book is just the first of many. Get used to waiting 🙂

  • Josiah

    Excellent post! I immediately thought of Veruca Salt in the Wonka factory demanding her father to buy her the goose that lays the golden eggs. She’s the heiress of a gargantuan family fortune, yet, she’s discontent constantly. Shouting “But I want it now!!” when her father attempts to dissuade her wishes to buy the not-for-sale goose. Of course, for clarity’s sake, my thoughts of poor Veruca in the Wonka factory are purely caricature in form and I never worry or succumb to such wanton behavior with my freedom and expectations… ;o)

  • You know it’s weird and funny in a way but when I was young and frustrated about (place desired thing here) I used to think about the day of my death. Not in a morbid way, but realizing someday I’m leaving here to go to God. Everything that’s going on now will be left behind – including (place desired thing here). Peace always flooded me with that realization, and brought me outside of time in a way. It made me understand my flesh will always value something more than Christ. But the truth is, the flesh is going down… someday. 🙂

  • Becky S

    For me, my lack was not being fulfilled in my pursuit of God. Once the lies were revealed, and He spoke to me the truth, I am now able to rest. The biggest lie I was believing was that I couldn’t trust Him. Now I am able to “desire deeply and trust fully.” What a euphoric feeling!!

  • Anna

    The first (of many) times I sat through the Levels of Change class taught me something invaluable. There was this elusive (“place desired thing here”) thing outside of my grasp and I was constantly in a state of discontent because of it. Once I got my Identity crisis resolved (“I am loved, secure, and significant in His Kingdom”) I began to remind myself of this every time the “elusive thing” crept back into my thinking leaving me discontent. I have experienced peace and contentment in the midst of not having the elusive thing, even today. 🙂

  • robin speakman

    Thanks. Excited to read your book, a great example of free in the process, being in the moment, and the reward.

  • I have long known that God wants me to live in the balance – the balance of where I am now and where I am destined to be.

    You have reminded me of a lesson I learned a while ago… But rather than brief it here I am going to write about it on my own blog! And, maybe post it over at Colleen Forshee’s place. 🙂 Thanks for a timely reminder. I’m finding my “balance” again.

  • Oh ya, so worth comin by to sample this blog TODAY! identifying something close is very unnerving, yet a relief. Identifying the solution, however is the Elusive Thing…. So now what?