Day in and day out I see ads for things that I don’t need. But somehow just by knowing that I don’t have these advertised things, I now want them. For example, when I sit down to watch TV I’m not necessarily hungry, but after seeing that olive garden commercial, I really want some bread sticks. Or when I see an Apple commercial for the latest iPhone, I now want a new phone (when mine works perfectly fine).
When I was younger I never really cared about what I wore. I just knew that I needed a shirt, pants, and shoes, and I was ready to go. It didn’t matter if they matched, as long as I was comfortable, I was good to go. Then one day, towards the end of elementary school, this group of kids started pointing out how I always wore the same clothes. And that I always looked frumpy, because I didn’t care what I looked like. All of a sudden, I was obsessed with how I looked. The next year I forced my mom to take me school clothes shopping, so I could get all new clothes. They had to be brand new, nothing from the thrift store was acceptable.
Now, somehow in my little twelve-year-old brain, I thought people would like me more because of all these new clothes. They told me I needed new clothes, I got new clothes, so they must like me now right? Simple enough… or so I thought. Nope! No one cared that I got all new clothes, because I didn’t have a Lulu Lemon headband. So… if you haven’t guessed already, I went a got a few Lulu Lemon headbands. They must like me now… Right? Guess again… There were still many more things I “needed” before I could be friends with them. After spending all of my middle school years (and all of my mom’s money) trying to be like the group of people who so obviously didn’t like me, I realized that it didn’t matter.
It was never about trying to look good. It was all about wanting to be wanted.
I spent so many years trying to get people to like me that I forgot there were other people who actually liked me for who I was. I also forgot, that God created me the way He did for a reason.
I got so caught up in what I wanted that I didn’t realize, what I “wanted” would actually hurt me in the long run. And that I never wanted it in the first place.
Sometimes in life we get so caught up in our wanter, or rather what the world says we should want, that we forget what we truly need. And by doing what you want and not what you need, you can harm yourself in the process.
This is exactly what happened with Israel and Samuel. The elders of Israel went to Samuel and asked for a king. When in reality, that would only hurt them. After Samuel explained how detrimental a king would be to Israel, they still pleaded for a king.
This is a classic example of wanting what we think we need, but not seeing the whole picture. And even when the whole picture is presented to us, we still think we know better. Sometimes we do this with God. I know I do.
Right now I’m in a season of trying to find the balance between my wanters. There are so many things I want to do right now, but if I do them I won’t be following God’s plan for my life. When in reality, I want to follow God’s plan for my life, because there is nothing better than God’s plan.
I don’t always want what I need and I don’t always need what I want.
“When Samuel grew old, he appointed his sons as Israel’s leaders. The name of his firstborn was Joel and the name of his second was Abijah, and they served at Beersheba. But his sons did not follow his ways. They turned aside after dishonest gain and accepted bribes and perverted justice. So all the elders of Israel gathered together and came to Samuel at Ramah. They said to him, “You are old, and your sons do not follow your ways; now appoint a king to lead[b] us, such as all the other nations have.” But when they said, “Give us a king to lead us,” this displeased Samuel; so he prayed to the Lord. And the Lord told him: “Listen to all that the people are saying to you; it is not you they have rejected, but they have rejected me as their king. As they have done from the day I brought them up out of Egypt until this day, forsaking me and serving other gods, so they are doing to you. Now listen to them; but warn them solemnly and let them know what the king who will reign over them will claim as his rights.” Samuel told all the words of the Lord to the people who were asking him for a king. He said, “This is what the king who will reign over you will claim as his rights: He will take your sons and make them serve with his chariots and horses, and they will run in front of his chariots. Some he will assign to be commanders of thousands and commanders of fifties, and others to plow his ground and reap his harvest, and still others to make weapons of war and equipment for his chariots. He will take your daughters to be perfumers and cooks and bakers. He will take the best of your fields and vineyards and olive groves and give them to his attendants. He will take a tenth of your grain and of your vintage and give it to his officials and attendants. Your male and female servants and the best of your cattle and donkeys he will take for his own use. He will take a tenth of your flocks, and you yourselves will become his slaves. When that day comes, you will cry out for relief from the king you have chosen, but the Lord will not answer you in that day.” But the people refused to listen to Samuel. “No!” they said. “We want a king over us. Then we will be like all the other nations, with a king to lead us and to go out before us and fight our battles.” When Samuel heard all that the people said, he repeated it before the Lord. The Lord answered, “Listen to them and give them a king.” Then Samuel said to the Israelites, “Everyone go back to your own town.”‘ 1 Samuel 8:1-22
By: Ashley Martinez
Ashley is a student at Mountlake Terrace High School. Her passions include: worship, working with kids, connecting with new people, and ministry. One of her not so secret talents is that she is a very loud and outspoken person. She talks a lot. Because most of her days are spent hanging out with the 7-year-old kid that she nannies, she doesn’t really get to have intellectual conversations with her peers. That’s why she writes. Writing is her favorite form of expression. It gives her a platform for all of her thoughts. Her most favorite way to pass time is to grab slushies and go to the park.
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