Disordered Desires (Psalm 23)
Reading: Psalm 23
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want.
I want a lot of things that I don’t have.
What would it mean to be satisfied in the Lord? How can one look to him alone to meet all of our needs?
St. Augustine wrote that idolatry is disordered love. That is, we love the good things that God has given us, but not in the right order. We love our own glory before God’s. We love comfort and pleasure more than we love righteousness and justice. Our glory, comfort, and pleasure are all good things in themselves. But we place to high a priority on them, and they become idols to us.
How many of my wants are fueled by idolatrous loves? How much does my lack of satisfaction in life result from not appreciating the fullness of what I have in the Lord? What if I entrusted myself so fully to the Lord that I should not only expect to have my needs met, but also to have my desires shaped by him? What if I looked to him not just to give me what I desire, but to shape the order of my desires, as well?
When we entrust ourselves to the Lord, when we entrust our satisfaction to God, what we will find is that he may not give us all that we want. Instead, what we will find is that our desires themselves will change. God will re-order our loves to reflect how we are made. We will learn to be satisfied in him, and he will reveal himself more and more to us.
To be in this place is to be with Jesus in Gethsemane, praying, “Not my will, but yours be done.” It is to be most fully satisfied in the will of God and to entrust to him our welfare. And when we see Jesus who walked through the valley of the shadow of death, that we need not fear evil. Because he will walk us through, and we will be satisfied at his table.
Lord, we want so many things, and sometimes our desires so overwhelm us that we lose control in pursuit of them. Please forgive us for making good things into ultimate things. And Lord, please shape our desires to reflect yours. Make us like Jesus who said, not my will but yours be done. Grant us the hope of the resurrection and the wedding supper of the Lamb.