“One Thing I Want”
Andrew, on occasions, used to wistfully say, “You know, all I really want is…” then he would say some ephemeral pleasure, like ‘a drink of coke’, or ‘quiet’, or ‘to get something finished’. So, one day I decided to ensure that his greatest desire (‘all I really want’) was met. This time all he ever wanted was a coffee, so I bounced up and brought him the best cup of coffee I could make and added a little yummy treat to compliment it. A few days later he once again said, “All I really want…” and I interrupted to finish his sentence for him … “was the cup of coffee that I was able to make for you the other day. I bet it was the best ever. I’m so glad I could meet that greatest desire you have.” He never said, ‘All I really want’ again!
But I, like many others, have wondered if we got the question that Solomon got from God, what would we say?
At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon during the night in a dream, and God said,
“Ask for whatever you want Me to give you.”
First Kings 3:5
What one thing would you want? I think if we answer the question quickly, we come up with a shocking list of greed. One of my greed items would be a very particular ‘Stressless’ chair. But that most certainly would bring me great distress if I got the chair hoping all my life’s desires would be met in it. I would see poverty. I would see people dying unnecessarily. I would see gross injustice. I would see people going to a Christ-less eternity – and my chair would not come close to giving me peace of mind. In fact I would be filled with shame and embarrassment in letting anyone know that this was all I really wanted in life!
[Jesus] said to them, “Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed;
life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.”
I loved the saying on Gateway Baptist’s sign (taken from Bob Marlow) that read “Some people are so poor, all they have is money’. Life is far richer than things. So, if we were to contemplate the offer of anything and really take time to think about it – what do we really want in life?
My thoughts are that a common noun (a thing) may even be replaced with an abstract noun (an idea, a quality, or a state of mind/being). Maybe your one thing would be a particular talent, peace (rather than war or anxiety), maybe freedom for those caught up in slavery. Solomon wanted wisdom (2 Chronicles 1:11).
I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
The more meaningful states of being and fullness of life emerge in these concepts. Faith, hope and love are three virtues mentioned in First Corinthians13:13, and the greatest of these is love. Research shows that children without the unconditional love of a parent suffer. The tragic scenes of the Romanian orphanages of the 1990s still haunts my thoughts with little children doing what was dubbed the ‘orphan rock’ in an effort to comfort themselves. Many people spend their life searching for love and acceptance – from friends, colleagues, crowds, a life-partner. I have seen all sorts of behaviour just in the hope for a few minutes of attention. Jealousies arise if friendships are jeopardised by a ‘new’ person of interest. We need love.
The Bible has a delightful ‘one thing’ to want.
I have asked the Lord for one thing; one thing only do I want
to live in the Lord’s house all my life, to marvel there at his goodness, and to ask for his guidance.
In this whole Psalm, David shows that he has found a really wonderful place in the presence of God, better than any other place he had found. All he wanted was to be with God. Through the Psalm he recognises God’s goodness, mercy, acceptance, protection guidance and salvation. He has found a strong, protective love, which is only expected because God IS love. In this place David has security. In the presence of God, he has all he needs.
It is so easy to understate this place because words don’t seem to do it justice. It is a gentle but profound security knowing that God chooses to love you absolutely AND He is all powerful and able to hear and see you wherever you go. God is completely able to care for you with ALL your needs despite any circumstance that you face! He watches over your every move and smiles AND even sings over you. What a wonderful place of rest that David has found, where he is then able to step out to do things where good outcomes may not look secure. He literally risked losing his possessions, his reputation and his life, but was secure.
So David found that ‘to live in the house of the Lord’ was not just to bask in the presence of God, but do the will of God. (Why else would he need guidance?) And his life showed this.
Taste and see that the Lord is good.
One thing I really want is to do life with my Abba Father, lover of my soul. I guess that would be your one desire also, however you choose to say it.
Pastoral Leadership Team Member,
Let me know what you think below in the comment section and feel free to share this someone who might benefit from this Pastor’s Desk.
5 Things We Need To Do To Break Our Church’s 200 Barrier, Premium Audio
Apologetics Part 1 – Introduction To Apologetics, Premium Audio
Apologetics Part 2 – The Apologetic Arguments For God, Premium Audio
Apologetics Part 3 – The Apologetic Arguments For The Bible, Premium Audio