All the quotes in this post are from a blog post Mike (Tenth Avenue North) wrote about the idea of being satisfied. I would definitely recommend reading his entire post because I just used a few quotes from what he said and he wrote about the idea of being satisfied a lot better then I did. :)
We want it. We run after it. And yet, somehow
it always seems to elude us.
What’s our problem?
What went wrong?
I have this thing where, I always like to be looking forward to something. My parents tell me that one year at my birthday party (that we had been planning for weeks), the day was only halfway down and I said, “This is fun! I can’t wait till next year!” and started planning what I wanted to do for my birthday the next year. lol I think we all kind of have that tendency, we’re all looking for something that will bring us satisfaction. For me, I look for satisfaction in my friends, that’s why I wanted to plan my birthday party for the next year, not for the cake and presents, but because I wanted to get together with my friends again. I always have some “day” that is occupying my thoughts. Like last night was WinterJam which I had been constantly thinking about for weeks. Today I can’t stop thinking about going to see a movie with my friends. Once that’s done, I’ll start looking forward to The Gathering and the Hillsong United concert in a few weeks. But when those things have passed, I start looking forward to the next big thing. And I can get pretty sad when I don’t have anything to look forward too… I feel bored. Discontent. Unsatisfied.
If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy,
the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world. – C.S. Lewis
That quote is profound. I should write it down and hang it up everywhere so that I will see it all the time. Nothing in this world is every going to satisfy my desires. No wordly thing could ever keep me content. Because I was made for another world. “But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ” (Philippians 3:20, NIV). The only thing that can ever satisfy me is Jesus. And while there are some days when I completely realize that and feel content, there are other days where I try to fill that longing with people, or music, or an experience.
But here’s the deal. If we first understand that our soul is longing for far more than this world can offer then we can learn to expect and manage a certain level of discontentment in our soul, as we walk this earth.
Jesus says to store up for yourself treasure in heaven, because where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. (Matthew 16:19-21) Our hearts need to be in heaven. Our hearts need to be satisfied in God. Our longing cannot be satisfied by anything in this world because we were not made for this world. Our home is in heaven.
You see, when your spouse or sports team or favorite food or music no longer has to be the thing that satisfies the deepest longing in your heart, you can actually enjoy them more.
Suddenly, the pressure’s off.
When God satisfies the deepest longing of our hearts, then suddenly, the earthly things we once desired seem trivial. In light of God, chasing after fame or money or a person seems to not matter as much.
But how much more could we enjoy each other if instead of trying to get them to fill us we walked with each other toward the waterfall?
Instead of trying to fill ourselves up with the little things that can never fill us completely, we should go to the waterfall of God to be filled to overflowing.
Why are you striving these days?
Why are you trying to earn grace?
Why are you crying?
Let me lift up your face
Just don’t turn away
Why are you looking for love?
Why are you still searching as if I’m not enough?
To where will you go child?
Tell me where will you run
To where will you run
And please don’t fight
These hands that are holding you
My hands are holding you
Last night we saw Tenth Avenue North at WinterJam and they sang that song. It’s written from the perspective of God, asking why we’re trying to run after other things. Why do we search as if God is not enough? It seems silly to think that anyone would even think that God could be less then enough, but yet everyday we live like He is. We chase after other things and try to earn His favour and look for love in people and pets and things that will never love us with the unconditional love that He gives.
Have you considered Moses’ prayer in Psalm 90,
“Satisfy me in the morning with your unfailing love”?
I love that prayer, because it shows us that Moses knew his own heart.
He knew how much joy He was made for, and He knew that if He didn’t get God
to come and pour into the canyon of his heart first thing in the morning, that he would go running after pebble like substitutes.
Satisfy me in the morning! In the morning!
And then, and this is the hard part,
if you don’t feel satisfied, don’t go running after substitutes.
Sit right there, content in your discontentment, and say to God,
“Alright look. I don’t feel satisfied by you right now, but one thing I know,
no matter what else I run to, it’s not gonna do it for me anyway, so I’m gonna wait for you.
Teach me O Lord, to know deeply that I’m not home here,
Teach me that all this world offers, and all the good things you’ve given us to enjoy,
they may be good, but they’re not the ultimate.
They’re not you.
Only you can satisfy.”
*edit* This is an edited version of the above picture that I made using the site Picnik. :)
This post was inspired by this picture that I took for Photography class and because of a comment made by another student in the class, Mark. He was analyzing it and said that it looked like “a free spirit in a broken world.” The original idea for this picture was a girl spinning in the rain with her hands up looking like she was worshiping God even through the storm. I had the idea a long time ago but never got to take it, and even though I didn’t quite get to take the picture I wanted, I liked how this one turned out. :) I also took the one at the bottom of this post and even though it’s not quite in the rain with her hands up, it still kinda conveyed that idea of worshiping God. :)
I was thinking about the idea of a free spirit in a broken world, and it reminded me of one of my favourite Bible verses, Philippians 2:15 – “So that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe.” This verse is basically just a longer description of the idea, saying that we as Christians are to be lights and free in a generation that is in darkness and brokenness. Just last weekend I listened to a sermon series by Johnnie Moore, campus pastor at Liberty University, called “Shine” based on the extended passage of this verse and I’d like to share a little about what he said.
Speaking on verse 14, Johnnie said that sometimes we live a “faith show instead of a faith life.” We go to church and read our Bible and pray at church when we’re supposed to. But it doesn’t carry over into our whole life. He said that being a Christian is also about who you are when no one is watching. Living a faith life. When Paul was writing to the Philippians he was urging them to live a faith life. He challenged them to live and obey just as if he was still in their presence. He knew that when he left that it would be easy for them to become complacent and not live as fully as when he was there keeping them on track. I know I’m guilty of living a faith show sometimes. It’s easy to be so busy with things and to have heard the messages and read the scriptures that we just become complacent and don’t let what we hear and read have any effect in our life. But I can attest to the fact that living a faith life is so much more fulfilling, exciting, rewarding, and overall better then just putting on a show. Even though I don’t always live like I should, I am trying to do better and live so that my faith is a part of every aspect of my life.
When Johnnie got to verse 15 about shining as brightly as the stars he said that God uses words for a reason and that He was telling us to be as bright and shiny as the lights in the sky. He then tried to explain it using imagery. When you are in a dark room, you are naturally drawn to the only light, even if it’s small. It stands out and you instantly see it. We as Christians are supposed to be that light! He said that people should be naturally drawn to us because we are shining bright in a generation that is in darkness. When we are living a faith life, our lives are a light to those who’s lives are broken. We are free, while they are in bondage. We are the light, while they are in darkness.
Looking at the picture I see someone who is free amidst a world that is broken. Someone who is content, happy, joyful, and a light even when everything around her (or him) is broken, crooked, depraved, and in darkness. That sort of contentment, happiness, joyfulness and light can only be found in a relationship with Jesus. I know that most people who read my blog are Christians, but maybe some have stumbled across it who don’t have that relationship with Him. I would LOVE to talk to you more about it and tell you about how Jesus has changed my life so that I am now free in a world that is broken and in darkness. Just leave me a comment or find me on Facebook or send me an email (sapphiraadi[at]elyonscircle[dot]com)!
I’ve been trying to think all weekend what I should write about and while I’ve had ideas, nothing really stuck out to me as worthy of writing about. Then I remembered a blog post that my lovely friend Caitlyn wrote about the idea of Story. I love to read stories and I love hearing people’s stories but there is one Story that is at the heart of all other stories. That Story is the greatest love story, the greatest action story, the greatest comedy, and the greatest redemptive story that has ever been written about. And the best part is, it’s real, and we all have the opportunity to be living in that Story. So I’d love for you to check out Caitlyn’s blog about it, because she wrote about it much more beautifully then I could! Leave her a comment telling her your thoughts or (if you’re a girl) head over to the A Beauty Glorious forum and come discuss the idea of Story with other girls who are passionate about living their lives for the glory of the One who wrote the Story. :)
I also want to leave you with some lyrics by Phil Wickham about the Story, called True Love.
Come close listen to the story
About a love more faithful than the morning
The Father gave His only Son just to save us
The earth was shaking in the dark
All creation felt the Fathers broken heart
Tears were filling heaven’s eyes
The day that true love died, the day that true love died
When blood and water hit the ground
Walls we couldn’t move came crashing down
We were free and made alive
The day that true love died, the day that true love died
Search your heart you know you can’t deny it
Come on, lose your life just so you can find it
The Father gave His only Son just to save us
Now, Jesus is alive
Jesus is alive
Jesus is alive
Jesus is alive
Jesus is alive
Oh, He is alive
He rose again
I was just realizing it was the end of the week and I hadn’t written a blog post yet for this week. Whoops. :) So here is one I started a few days ago and just finished up. :)
Yesterday night I watched the Prince of Egypt with my family. It’s an animated DreamWorks movie based on the life of Moses when he rescued the Hebrews from Egypt. The movie was awesome, the music was incredible, the animation funny. *lol* And when it got to the end where Moses parts the Red Sea, I had this awesome thought… “What if when we get to heaven, we can have instant replays of the epic moments of God’s power in history?!” Like have movie night and relive the crossing of the Red Sea, the walls of Jericho falling down, the flood, creation, Daniel in the lion’s den, Rack Shack and Benny in the fiery furnace. Like how COOL would that be?!?
I would love to be able to see those moments! I cannot wait to be able to talk to my favourite heroes of the Bible, to ask them questions about what it was like going through what they did, how it felt to trust God completely to deliver them from their situation, how they felt after God miraculously provided…
I want to watch as Esther, dressed in all the splendor of a Queen, walked into the throne room of the King not knowing if she would live or die. What was going through her mind when she did that? What did the people in the courtyard think? (Esther 5)
David against Goliath, to see little David fearlessly confront Goliath with just his sling and 5 smooth stones, because Goliath had defied God. Was he really as fearless as the story makes him out to be? What was going through his mind as Goliath walked up to him and uttered curses at him? (1 Samuel 17)
See Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego refuse to bow down to the King and be thrown in the fire. Then to see Someone else in the fire with them and when they came out they weren’t burned, singed or smelling like fire. When they refused the King did they do so with complete confidence and without fear of what would happen? Or did they do so trembling and afraid but ready to do what they knew was right? (Daniel 3)
To see the lion’s den from Daniel’s point of view; to be thrown down there with hungry lions and to spend the night with them prowling around. What exactly happened when he got down there? Did the lions try to attack him and God protected him by shutting their mouths and with a bubble of protection around him? Hehe, that image makes me laugh, I can just picture this lion pouncing on Daniel and then finding it’s mouth shut and that it can’t reach him. :) Or did God make them so that they just ignored him? (Daniel 6)
To be one of the Israelites standing before the Red Sea and watch as Moses raised his staff and God parted the waters. What was going through Moses’ mind after witnessing all the plagues of Egypt? Did he have complete faith that the waters would part? Or did he doubt? What did the Israelites think? Could you see the fish swimming around in the water right next to you? (Exodus 14)
To watch Jesus, hanging on a cross, bleeding, broken, and dying. For me. For you. For everyone. To see the temple veil be torn in two from top to bottom and feel the earthquake as Jesus died for the sins that I am guilty and should have been punished for. But then! To see that Sunday morning when the woman went to the tomb and saw that it had been rolled away! To see the angel’s say “He is not here, He has RISEN just as He said!” (Matthew 27-28, Mark 15-16, Luke 23-24, John 19-20)
Pentecost, when the Holy Spirit came down in tongues of fire and the disciples spoke and everyone understood in their own language! What was going through Peter’s mind as he stood up to address the crowd? How did he hear himself? (Acts 2)
Those are just a few of the many questions and people I can’t wait to meet! I haven’t even touched the tip of the iceburg ;) of all the questions I have and the people I want to meet. To talk to Joshua about the walls of Jericho falling down, Elijah on Mount Carmel, Elisha when Elijah was taken into heaven by a fiery chariot, Balaam and his talking donkey, Solomon the wisest man on earth, Job and his testing, Noah and the flood, Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden… my list is endless!
So what are your favourite heroes of the Bible? What are some of the questions you would like to ask them when you get to heaven? Is there a moment in Biblical history that you would like to relive? Or even a moment in the life of a non-biblical hero that you would like to relive or talk to?