Wanting What I Want … Now

August 11, 2017
by Martin Wiles

Deuteronomy 16:20 – Let true justice prevail, so you may live and occupy the land that the Lord your God is giving you. (NLT)

I sat in my recliner and watched injustice raise its ugly head.

Six balls of various sizes floated around our den. More than enough for each of our three grandboys to have more than one. But they wanted the same one. Our youngest grandson played with one, minding his own business. The middle grandson wasn't satisfied that he had five more to choose from. He wanted the one that his cousin had. So, he snatched it. Our youngest grandson crawled over and retrieved another ball, only to have his cousin snatch that one. In the midst of this greedy drama, the oldest grandson decided that he wanted the same ball that his younger brother and cousin were playing with. So, he snatched it from his brother, who, in turn, screamed bloody murder. I figured that it was time for me to intervene and teach them a lesson on sharing.

Keeping our three small grandchildren in our home for six days a week provides many life lessons. One, in particular, has to do with greed. I've noticed that I don't have to teach them to be greedy; it comes with the human territory. Rather, I have to spend my time teaching them to share and be kind.

God warned the nation of Israel to appoint judges who would see that justice prevailed. If they didn't, the harmony of the nation would be affected, and so would their relationship with their neighbours.

Greed gives evidence of a selfish spirit, and without God's help, it will, like the jealousy monster, gobble me up. Life is more pleasant when it's all about me, but God never designed anyone's life to be just about them. His order is Him first and others second. My selfish desires come farther down the list. When they are near the top, I soon learn that I have misplaced priorities.

Only God can birth an unselfish spirit in my life. Just as I have to instill that in my grandchildren through disciplinary and other teaching methods, so God has to do the same for me. But I must give Him free rein to do so. Bucking His efforts keeps me from learning the lessons that He wants to teach me about how wonderful an unselfish lifestyle can be.

Instead of holding on to greed, let us allow God teach us the joys of unselfishness.

Prayer: Father, guide us to follow Your unselfish example of giving Your all to us. Amen.

About the author:

Martin Wiles <mandmwiles@gmail.com>

Greenwood, South Carolina, USA


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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks Martin for sending us this wake-up call. Blessings.


    Great lesson Martin. We discussed a similar topic in our church Bible study. God Bless.


    And on top of this we get impatient when God says wait!
    Thanks for sharing. Great illustration. My cats do the same thing!


    Oh ouch, Martin. Praying to be blessed with an unselfish heart, mind and life. It’s so very easy to slip-slide into a self-centeredness, especially when a person lives a solitary lifestyle. The “I wants” so readily take control. Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy, please send your redeeming flood to wash away all guilt. Amen.


    I see this in my grandchildren too. But I am in a place now where I have to look after myself and say no to other things. A lot of women I know do everything for everyone else and they themselves are totally neglected. They care for their families, their church and community, make sacrifices of their time and talents, but self-care is far down the list. Their self-worth is in doing for others. God is teaching me it is okay to say no when you need time to look after yourself. It’s not selfish. It’s necessary and I can do things for me. I don’t get my self-worth from serving others. I get it from being a child of God.
    Thanks for the reminder.


    Good Morning Martin!
    Thank you for your Devotional which is very interesting and meaningful! I have also seen the same actions in our children and grandchildren, and it is very distressing. Sometimes I even see it reflected in my mirror! That is even more distressing!
    This is why there is so much trouble in our world…….there are too many “ME” people who only devote time to self-satisfaction. Read the poem “Ozimandious” (not sure of the spelling) and then apply it to today’s leaders.
    Interesting, and frightening, especially in North Korea! May Jehovah God prevent a perhaps unstoppable disaster!
    Blessings.


    Three little grandsons, six days a week …. I’m praying for you, Martin!


    Oh how I wish you could tell me how you teach your grandchildren to share and not be greedy. Our three grandchildren are with us a good deal. What I say does not seem to stay with them very long and it breaks my heart to see them being unkind to each other.

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