Wanted

Much of my life has been driven by a single emotion: the desire to be wanted.

I grew up in a difficult neighborhood. It was almost all boys. And many times, I’ve told the stories about how they tortured me. If we played “tag,” I was always “it.” If we played baseball, they made me chase down the foul balls. They even once tied me to a tree with our dog’s chain. But the stories I never tell are the ones about the girls in the neighborhood. There were two of them and they were both a little older than I. I tried everything in the world to get them to let me join their club, and they would make me do the most horrible things. But after I had done everything they demanded and passed every initiation and test, they still wouldn’t let me in. Eventually, I learned that the torture of the boys hurt less than the rejection of the girls and I started to chase the boys again.

All I wanted was to belong. To be wanted.

It’s not a very popular fact with the world today, but we are wanted. Long ago, before the beginning of what we know as time, we were each created in the workroom of Heaven. And His great desire was for us to love and be loved by Him. But when He set us on this earth, we forgot Him. We ignored Him and did whatever felt good to us. And He sits in the workroom of Heaven, wishing for us to come back to Him.

If you’ve ever seen the movie, “My Big Fat Greek Wedding,” there’s a part where Maria (the mother of the bride) tells her daughter, “Toula, I gave you life so you could live it.” Toula loved her parents so much that she didn’t want her decisions to hurt them. Yet her mother gave her the gift of freedom: “I gave you life so you could live it!”

God has given us that gift. So, why don’t we receive it with gratefulness and reward it with love, the way Toula did? Instead, we look at God’s love as a burden. And we think that He doesn’t want us to live. We think that He’s going to give us a personality transplant, keep us from having any fun, and lock us into a box. When really, He’s just saying what Maria said to Toula. “I gave you life so you could live it.”

In Pursuit of God, A.W. Tozer says, “God wills that we should push on into His Presence and live our whole life there…. It is more than a doctrine to be held, it is a life to be enjoyed every moment of every day.” (Tozer, 23)

My friend John Hobbs says, “You can go anywhere, as long as you don’t have to let go of His hand.”

With God, I belong. I’m wanted. Everywhere I go.

Today we are discussing Chapter 3 of A.W. Tozer’s classic, Pursuit of God. You don’t have to read the book to stick around and chat! Jason Stasyszen and I love to hear what you have to add to the discussion! If you’ve written a response to this week’s chapter, please feel free to link it up in the widget below. Next week, we will be continuing with a second discussion on Chapter 3 and the widget will be at Jason’s.

** Special Note ** Now that I’m working, I am not able to read or comment on these posts, or respond to most of the blog comments until after the workday on Wednesday. Please have patience with me! I am reading and enjoying the discussions! Thanks for participating!

 

About Sarah Salter

Comments

  1. People will do the strangest and/or most degrading things to feel wanted. We almost treat it like it’s a consolation prize to get that acceptance from God, but as we receive it from Him, it affects every single area of our lives and every relationship. Without the Presence, we can’t enjoy Him fully. If my wife is away on a trip without me, I can enjoy memories of our time together but it’s not the same as her being with me. Some have settled in with memories and some have never even experienced Him, but His desire for us never changes. Good thoughts, Sarah! Thank you.

  2. (late work-day for me too, so you have my sympathy!)

    God gave us life so we could live it. I love that thought- it is so comforting, so encouraging! When the life I’m living doesn’t seem to “look” like I think it should, I need to remember the *new* life God has given me and rejoice!

  3. Sarah Salter says:

    Jason, I actually had a pretty great LATE lunch today. Because I ended up getting lunch late, everybody else had come in from the back patio where I eat. I sat back there with my PB&J and looked across the quad at Mt. Saint Helens. And in that quietness, I had just a very calm, low-key chat with God, where He really spoke to my heart. His Presence was there with me and I walked away changed. And not just because I had PB&J in my belly. But because I had renewed peace in my heart. :-)

  4. Sarah Salter says:

    Frank, my life looks SO different right now than I always thought it would/could/should look! Most of my “church” these days is sitting at a bar — not drinking beer (because I don’t like it) — but listening to the kinds of people that The Church of my past always told me I should avoid. Thank God, I started listening to Him and stopped listening to The Church of my past!

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