We all do it. We all see others who seem to be better off than we are in some way and we long for whatever it is they have that we want. This isn’t just material things, but maybe someone has a relationship you desire, or a job, or an ability, or a talent, or a feature. The list could literally go on and on.
There are two things in particular that tend to spark this longing in me. One is a lean, fit body, I can watch a movie and spend the whole thing thinking about how much more I’d enjoy shopping for clothes, or swimming in the summer, or doing just about anything if I looked like the female lead, instead of just enjoying the movie. I can look through magazines and have more of a desire to look like the models than for the clothes they are selling me.
The other is a cute, little house in a cute, little neighborhood. For some reason, this one hits hard in the Fall. I’m guessing because that is my favorite season, and there is just something so cozy and homey about it. Just driving down the street of an older neighborhood, or passing a cute house, or being guests at someone else’s home can bring up that feeling of longing in my gut.
However, the idea that either one of these things could bring any lasting satisfaction to my soul is ridiculous. No lean, fit body is going to change the longing deep within me. No cute, little house will fill me with contentment. If I look to these things, I will be chasing the “next thing” for the rest of my life. Because there is only One who can satisfy my soul.
If you have believed into Jesus Christ, then you, too, have been given every spiritual blessing in Him. Every single one. Nothing has been withheld from us who belong to Christ. We want for nothing because we have the All in All. Are we learning to take Him as our All? We can get lots of practice in taking Him as our all every time we long for lesser things. When that longing sweeps over us we can simply turn to Him, and by faith receive Him as our All.
Have you noticed that all the things we long for are actually temporary things? They are things that pass away. A lean, fit body will eventually grow old (already is) and pass away. However, I’ve been given a new resurrection body in Christ that I will experience when He returns. A body that will not grow old, and pass away. Why long for the temporary one? Every single thing built by man, including the super cute hundreds of years old cottages in Great Britain, fall apart, and pass away. However, I’m being built into God’s eternal home with my brothers and sisters in Christ. We will be God’s dwelling and dwell with Him for ever.
In and through the church I’m experiencing a foretaste of our resurrection bodies by being a part of the Body of Christ. In and through the church I’m experiencing a foretaste of the house of God by being built into His home here and now with His family. This is the experience of the church and it is glorious.
So now, when I begin to have these longings, when the lies tempt me, I simply turn to the Lord, and thank Him for giving me every spiritual blessing in Christ Jesus. Why would I long for these lesser, temporary things, when I have been given all greater, eternal things in Christ? I wouldn’t! And the truth is, I don’t when I keep my eyes fixed on Jesus.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ… Ephesians 1:3
Does recognizing that what we long for is usually temporary, but we’ve been given every spiritual blessing already help you to lay down those longings? Has the Lord revealed anything of what we have in Him to you that has specifically helped you experience contentment in all things?