What do I need? - Hope 103.2

What do I need?

Morning Devotions is for those curious about the Christian faith and who want to explore Christian issues that relate to their daily life.

By Chris WittsThursday 25 Jul 2013Morning Devotions with Chris WittsLifeReading Time: 0 minutes


If I were to ask you today what you need,my guess is that you’d have quite a long list. There are basic things we need like fresh air,somewhere to sleep,a job that pays an income,food and water,.. And the list goes on. We do have basic needs. We have a way of confusing need and greed.  In 1890 a sociologist did a study and asked Americans what they thought were the basic needs of life:  What are the absolute bare minimum necessities you felt you had to have in order to survive. In 1890 the study revealed that Americans thought there were 16 basic things every one needed in order to survive.  The survey was taken a while ago,  less than 100 years later.  Now Americans think they have to have 98 things in order to survive. Our wants have a way of being exaggerated into needs ..

When Mikhail Gorbachev,former President of the Soviet Union,was asked what the world needs he said “what we need is star peace and not star wars”. We know what he meant of course. But when Ruth Stafford Peale ( wife of Dr Norman Vincent Peale) was asked the same question she said something quite different. She said “find a need and fill it”. It has a different feel to it,doesn’t it. We do get confused about our own needs and the needs of others. But I want to suggest that God can and does provide for all our needs. It sounds simple – but if we could only believe that,life would take on a whole new meaning. It was the apostle Paul who said “My God shall meet all your needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus”.  (Philippians 4:19). This is one of the most inspiring verses in the Bible. Here is a God who has no limitations,no restrictions ..He can give us whatever we need – not want we want – but what we need. Our problem is we think we know what we need. Like the car bumper sticker I heard of that said “Get out of my way,I cannot stop. I won’t be happy until I shop”. The pleasures of shopping don’t go on forever. It is God who promises to meet our needs and in Him we find fulfilment – not in the pleasures of life.

You may think He hasn’t provided for you. What’s going on? Can I really count on the promises of God? I think our problem is our view of life is somewhat one way. We look for more and more instead of being content. We think that we need to have more if we’re going to be happy.  James 4:3 says,”Even when you do ask,you don’t get it because your whole motive is wrong-you want only what will give you pleasure.”  God doesn’t give us more if our motive is to accumulate more for our own selfish pleasures.  God is more interested in your character than your comfort.  God is watching your attitude to see if you’re content.  1 Timothy 6:6 says,”True religion with contentment is great wealth.”  If you are a follower of Jesus Christ,and you are content,then it doesn’t get any better.  There’s no greater wealth than that.  The passage goes on,”After all,we didn’t bring anything with us when we came into the world,and we certainly cannot carry anything with us when we die” (1 Timothy 6:7).  Babies aren’t born with an awful lot.   They don’t come into this world with car keys and stereos and stuff.   When you leave,you don’t take very much with you.  So the things you have on earth are just for the eighty or so years that you’re here.  They’re not that important. Learn to be content.  How can you be content?  Learn what makes you discontent.  Comparing causes discontent.  It’s stupid to compare.  There’s always someone smarter,richer,and better looking than you.  So don’t compare.  Ted Turner said,”If I sit down and say,’I’ve only got $10 billion,but Bill Gates has $100 billion,’ I’ll feel like I’m a complete failure in life.”  So don’t compare.  You will always find someone richer than you. 

God won’t give you more until you’re content with what you have.  If you’re not content with what you have,then it shows that your priorities are wrong; that you’re focusing too much attention on your possessions.  God says,”I won’t give you more because you won’t be able to handle what I want to give you.”  If you aren’t content,you’ll never be happy.   Be content with what you have. 

What is contentment?  Contentment is not a lack of goals or ambition.  Contentment means my happiness is not dependent upon circumstances.  Most people get caught into “when” thinking – “When I get such and such,then I’ll be happy.”  “When I get to a certain level economically… When I get a certain job … When I can retire … then I’ll be happy.  When I get the house paid off… When I get the bills paid off… then!”  God says,”No,once you get there you’ll always want something else.  You always want more.”  Somebody asked Howard Hughes,”How much does it take to make a man happy?”  He said,”Just a little more.” It’s far better to ask God for His help.  Be generous.  Content yourself with what you have. The Bible says,”Since God did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all,won’t God,who gave us Christ,also give us everything else?” (Romans 8:32)  God gave you the greatest gift he could ever give – the gift of his Son.  God will provide for all of your needs.  If you have needs you would like God to meet,would you pray this prayer,”Father,thank you that you are a heavenly Father and you’ve promised to meet all our needs.  Today I ask you for help.  I have needs that I need you to meet.  Lord,help me to be generous and content with what I have.  I pray that as I put you first in my life that you will provide for my needs,so that I will have everything I need.