Using God

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I’ve noticed a trend in education over the last 10 years that seems to be indicative of the world we live in. Some of my students over the years just expect things as if it were their right to have them. Of course, much of what I see in the classroom is learned behavior. Still, while most of the students I teach realize that you don’t get something for nothing, there are those who are convinced that the world exists to serve them.

It’s disheartening, really, to know that our society is beginning to evolve into a population of people that only wants what’s best for them. While this “me first” mentality appears to be a new idea, it’s actually as old as time. Sadly, there are those who even look to God as some sort of fairy, only there to dole out blessings because they think they deserve them.

In Mark 10:35, we see the apostles James and John come to Jesus with this request: “We want you to do for us whatever we ask.”  Sometimes we approach God with an arrogant attitude and our own agenda. We think the Lord is there to serve our needs and not the other way around. But God already has his own plan and it doesn’t necessarily mean you’ll get what you want. In this passage, Jesus tells these apostles, “whoever wants to be great among you must be your servant, and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and give his life as a ransom for many” (Mark 10:43-45).

Jesus was the perfect example of what it looks like to put God first. He has already served us in the greatest way possible when he died to reconcile us to God. Now it’s our turn. We must give him all that we are and all that we have and be content with how he blesses us. Love God with all your heart and know that he will give you exactly what you need to fulfill his plan during your lifetime.

-Joe

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6 thoughts on “Using God

    1. Joe Butler

      We are blessed to live in a time where we can reach people all over the world with the words from our keyboard. God has given the time and desire to write and I’m just trying to make the best use of the gifts he’s given me. Glad you enjoyed it.

  1. The current generation is all about self these days. Not everyone, but a good handful I would lightly say. It reminds of the scripture that says, “Delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Which you sort of word in your last sentence. Love God first, then He will give us our desires. Not that we get what we desire then love God because of it. Amen, brother.

  2. Joe Butler

    Being in education, I fight becoming pessimistic about the sense of entitlement of the next generation. I’ve come to realize that the children I teach are really just a product of how they are being raised. Even children who come from a family of believers suffer this malady because parents have taught them through actions and words that it’s what you get from God and people is what’s important. We have many kids at my church who come from broken homes who need the influence of other Godly adults to show them how to appreciate the many great blessings God has already given us. I can see that influence paying off as these children are developing a true and genuine love for God and for serving him without an expectation of a reward. And you’re right about God seeking to meet our desires as long as our desires line up with his will. He is a generous Father and loves to take care of his children.

  3. This is the real challenge for us in our lives–not how much did God love us, but how well did we love God?

    The one who has watched over us from birth, who held our soul in safekeeping for all eternity, whose love for us far outshines even that of the most devoted parent. How well did we love him back?

    And not merely when things are going our way, although we can certainly enjoy such times. But when our life is so painful that we long for death–how do we respond? Do we blame the only person left who loves us? Or do we stay the course and try to make our suffering a prayer, a gift of love?

    It makes me shake my head when people think Christians are simple-minded sorts who can’t face the real world. Christianity ultimately requires all that we are.

    I said a short prayer as I wrote this that everyone who reads this thread may remember Jesus’ great love in times of trial. May God bless and keep you all.

    1. Joe Butler

      At the root of the Bible message is God’s desire to reconcile us to him because he loves us so much. It’s hard to see people, myself included at times, take that love for granted and use God when it conveniently meets our own needs. Every day I try to take an eternal mindset and look at the people around me the way God does, children of his that are lost. If I can in even some small way use my life to bring him glory and help bring some of his children into a knowledge of His great love for them,then I would consider it a life well-lived.

      “Christianity ultimately requires all that we are.” That is the ultimate show of love. Our complete surrender is the true show of our faith and lets God and others know who is at the center of our life.

      Thank you very much for taking the time out to read the post and I hope it brought you great blessing today. To Him be all the glory.

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