“Appetites grow through indulgence — not neglect. Gluttons think just as much about food as starving people.”- C. S. Lewis, Mere Christianity
“You do not have because you do not ask God.”- James 4:2
Andy Stanley concludes Chapter 17 of Enemies of the Heart as he asserts that continually satisfying our desires and pleasures isn’t the best option for dealing with them. In addition, these endless, fruitless attempts only fuel our conflicts.
Therefore, owning that you want to get your own way makes a huge difference in resolving conflicts. As Pastor Stanley observes, when everyone involved in a quarrel owns it, most often the problem evaporates. In contrast, when you fail to own your part, you have no recourse but to blame. Hence, Andy defines as well as explains blame:
“Blame is . . . an admission that I can’t be happy without your cooperation. To blame is to acknowledge dependence: If you don’t act a certain way, I can’t be satisfied or content. If you take this to its logical extreme, you can never be happy until you’re able to control the actions and reactions of everybody you come into contact with — including everybody in your lane and both adjacent lanes on the freeway. And if that’s the case, there’s no hope!”
Consequently, Andy counsels, God loves you too much to give you everything you ask for. As the author points out, God’s the source of all good things. Not all wished-for things. But God still desires that we ask. And He wants us to accept ‘no’ for an answer, rather than take matters into our own hands. While that’s not always easy, it’s the best option. For it leads to peace, not frustration.
Today’s question: Which of your appetites grows through indulgence? Please share.
Tomorrow’s blog: “One big pile of discontentment”