All I Want Is All I Need

I often have a discussion with my kids (okay, sometimes I have this discussion with myself too!) about the difference between wants and needs.

Needs are requirements for life. I need oxygen, food, water, shelter.

Wants are my desires for life. I want a new computer, a faster car, a closer Starbucks.

But as I mature in my relationship with Christ, shouldn’t my need for Him and my want of Him become more and more similar? Shouldn’t the deepest longing (want) in my heart be for the one thing I need most?

Nicholas of Cusa wrote:

Who would think of paying a man to do what he was yearning to do already? For instance, no one would hire a hungry man to eat, or a thirsty man to drink, or a mother to nurse her own child. Who would think of bribing a farmer to dress his own vineyard, or to dig about his orchard, or to rebuild his house? So, all the more, one who truly loves God asks no other recompense than God Himself.

This is a simple song with a profound meaning. When my want for God’s closeness and my need for His closeness become one:

All I want is more of You

All I want is more of You

Nothing I desire, Lord, but more of You

I pray my wants and needs will more closely align as I fall in love with my Savior again and again and again and again and…

Average Joe (book review)

There’s nothing wrong with being an average Joe. And there’s certainly nothing “average” about Troy Meeder’s book entitled Average Joe!

For some time I’ve been concerned about the “feminization” of men. Particularly I’m concerned with how Christian men have bought into culture’s wrongheaded idea of what it means to be a real man. Should a real man be gentle? Yes! But “gentle” is not a code word for a passive sissy. Real men understand their God-given role to be the provider and protector for their family, which at times means they have to toughen up.

Being an average Joe for some guys has become a license to simply let life happen to them. Just take things as they come. Don’t get too worked up about anything. Don’t stand up too strongly for anything. Don’t make waves. As a result, average Joes then become another face in the crowd.

But not according to Troy Meeder. Real men stand up for what’s right. They don’t wait for life to come to them, they go and make life happen. They make good things happen, and they keep bad things from happening to those they love. A real average Joe looks a lot like Jesus Christ.

Average Joe is a collection of observations – almost individual essays – about what Troy sees as being a Jesus-honoring, family-loving, honest-to-goodness real man. I was challenged to look in the mirror with each chapter I completed.

This is a wonderful book for any REAL man to read. But the study guides in the book would also work very well as conversation starters for a men’s ministry, or even for small groups of men who are holding each other accountable.

I am a Multnomah book reviewer.

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