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Settling for Mud Pies

Do you ever get the impression from some Christians that God is a kill-joy who doesn’t want us to experience pleasure? I hope I don’t ever mistakenly leave that impression, because God is all about giving deep and lasting pleasure!

One of my favorite quotes from C.S. Lewis describes it so well:

“We are halfhearted creatures, fooling about with drink and sex and  ambition when infinite joy is offered us, like an ignorant child who wants to  go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the  offer of a holiday at sea. We are far too easily pleased.”1

God isn’t opposed to desire or pleasure. He created us with a huge capacity for both. For most of us, the problem with our desires is that they are too small.

Too ordinary.

Too  halfhearted.

When my desires are coming from my flesh rather than His Spirit, they are base and natural. But He invites us to walk with Him in the supernatural:

[box]But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other . . . (Galatians 5:16–17).[/box]

This passage goes on to describe the desires of the flesh: “sexual immorality, impurity,  sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmity, strife, jealousy, fits of anger,  rivalries, dissensions, divisions, envy, drunkenness,  orgies . . .”

Hmmm . . . not a pretty picture.

When my desires flow from selfish motives and are centered in selfish gain, they always leave me empty and gnawing with hunger. The desires of the flesh and Spirit are in opposition to one another and produce vastly different consequences. Fleshly desires are self-centered (think: two-year-old spoiled brat). But spiritual desires are God-centered.

In contrast to  the desires of the flesh which end in death, the desire of the Spirit produces love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

True fulfillment is only attained when my heart plugs into God’s desires.

When my love for Him grows greater than my love of lesser things, when His desires fuel my desires, then I’m experiencing the joy of living out God-sized desires. 

So what is “God’s ultimate desire?”

He lays out His one all-consuming passion and desire for us in Numbers 14:21:

[box]“But as truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the  LORD” (Numbers 14:21 KJV).[/box]

He’s leading a holy expedition and wants you to join in on His sacred mission. What a privilege! We’ve received an invitation to go beyond the fleshly, to live out His kingdom purpose.

In my next post, I’ll talk about what this looks like practically. In the meantime, though, who wants to join the quest?

1C. S. Lewis, The  Weight of Glory (New York: Macmillan, 1949), 3-4.

Originally posted 10.26.11 at www.truewoman.com.

One Comment

  • Vivian Etherington

    I do! I want to live out God-sized desires! I like that phrase, Kim. I am so thankful that He has invited us to walk with Him in the supernatural! What a privilege and what satisfaction!
    I have recently seen the glory of God through the very sad and difficult circumstances surrounding the tornado that took the lives of three in my church family, all in the same physical family. The body of Christ loving and supporting this family in very practical ways, through prayer, providing meals, clothing, etc. has been a very beautiful thing to witness and be a part of. The brevity of life……we must live for the glory of God!