I just wrote this prayer in my journal this morning:
“Please help me during this time of plenty and excess (Black Friday & Cyber Monday sales, Christmas coming up) to not get the gimmies or be dissatisfied with what we have.”
Yup. I admit. I struggle with the “gimmies” (as a total side note and rabbit trail, can someone explain to me why the “g” in the word give and consequently the word gimmies is a hard “g”, but not in gist, giraffe, gigantic, and gibberish? I’m sure there is a good explanation, but considering I went to French school, I never learned that in grammar/vocab/reading class).
Sorry, where was I again? Oh yes, as I was saying, I struggle with the gimmies. It’s sad really. I need to have the same talk with myself that I often have with my 5 year old daughter about being content. This time of year especially, as frugal as I am, I am constantly tempted by all the great deals out there – not enough to brave the stores early Friday morning, but definitely enough to browse online for hours. Honestly, I just need to go read the book “The Berenstain Bears Get the Gimmies.”
So, I wrote that prayer out this morning, and then this . . .
This is an excerpt from my devotional this morning. Coincidence? I think not.
How could you not have all that you need when your Savior has promised not to withhold any good thing from you?
“Need – it’s a very interesting word. It’s one of the most frequently used words in human culture and one of the words used most sloppily. We use it to refer to a vast and ever-expanding category that includes all the things that we become convinced that we just can’t live without . . . And we all have those moments when we wonder if God really does know what we need and really is committed to providing it . . .
The problem is that, if need means “essential for life,” most of the things we load into our need category aren’t really needs. They are actually desires that have become so precious and important to us that we have come to the point that we cannot conceive of being happy without them . . .
Here are three things that happen when you name something a need:
- If you are convinced that something is a need, you feel entitled to it. This means that you are sure it is your right to have it in your life.
- If you are convinced something is a need, you think that it’s your right to demand it. You do not feel uncomfortable about asking for it again and again.
- If you are convinced that something is a need, you judge the love of God by his willingness to deliver it.
. . . God hasn’t promised to deliver what you desire, but he has committed himself to meet every one of your needs, That’s why it’s so comforting to know that you have a heavenly Father who knows exactly what you need and is actively delivering.”
Boom! Talk about convicting! The Holy Spirit convicted me that even when I don’t struggle so much with the gimmies about material things, I do so with other aspects of my life. Like feeling entitled to health, feeling good, good weather on a special family day, taking a trip, or even a conflict-free day with my kids. The possibilities are endless: a promotion, a certain job, a [fill-in-the-blank]. So convicting. I’m thankful our loving Father is so forgiving and patient with us!
I pray that today, you and I would prayerfully evaluate the things we would consider our needs – even, and especially, the non-material ones. I pray that we would also remember to thank God for providing for all our true needs . . . and so many of our desires too!
And then this week, with a heart that is thankful and has the correct perspective, let’s pray that the Spirit would guide us to make decisions about those great deals. For some of us it may mean not taking advantage of any of them. For others, it may mean taking advantage of those deals that are in the budget and that were already on our wish lists. 🙂
Now, to go find that Berenstain Bears gimmies book . . .