Thursday, July 28, 2011

Why Can’t We Be Satisfied?

            This morning (Wednesday, 7-27-20011) I woke up with “I can’t get no satisfaction” running through my mind. Usually I wake up with a prayer, or praise on my heart, or even some contemporary worship song, but today “Satisfaction”! You see, for the past five weeks Michele and I have been on the road. Our vacation intermingled with two huge teacher conferences. We were home for almost a week before this newest adventure, but here we are in San Diego at an expensive resort.  Anyone would think, “What a sweet deal … three days and nights at a resort … cool ocean-breezes … maid service … dinners out … and someone else is paying … sign me up.”

            Well getting here was not quite that easy. It was a struggle. On the front end of our vacation we took the cars in for service. You know the drill; tires, oil change, general tune up, $1,300.00 a couple motor mounts, and assorted other work and we’re off for rest, relaxation, and one teacher conference in Nashville. On the trip we had to replace one tire, and we knew when we got home we would need another oil-change. By the way, there seems to be only one rule while driving in Nashville. It is actually a three step process: 1. Close your eyes. 2. Floor the accelerator. 3. Pray. Four weeks on the road and we make it home just in time to leave again.

So, I took the car in for service, Monday, the day before we were leaving for San Diego. The service guys put the car up on the rack and immediately say, “Looks like we have a problem. Your water pump needs to be replaced.” The job that was supposed to take two hours took all day and they had to pull the whole engine. I picked up the car just before closing time. The bill for this joyous experience was over $1,400.00. Then, I drove to the high school where I had dropped Michele off earlier in the morning for a few meetings and her before the school year begins frenzy of activity. (Realize she had been stuck at school all day, just as I was stuck at home waiting on the car. Her intent was to work only a couple of hours. It ended up being a FULL day.) I shut the car off and was greeted with violent shaking, some clanging and a bang. (Why can’t life just be simple and why can’t I just be satisfied?) I called the shop right away and explained where I was and what the situation was. The service manager said, “Don’t move the car. We’ll send a Tech. to your location and assess the problem.” (Can you feel my eyes rolling back?) I assured him I was not moving the car, and that yes someone should come and fix it.

            Half an hour later, when the Technician (We used to call them Mechanics.) arrived he quickly found the problem, and explained in his broken Asian- English way, “Problem is Motor Mount. Motor Mount is broken this side. Shop close now. You drive home. Bring back  shop 7:00 AM. We fix. Thirty minutes no problem.” He was right they did get it fixed in the time frame he gave and we were on our way … to the tire shop.

            It was Tuesday and I was still working on Monday’s list. (Does that happen to anyone else, or is it just me?) Thirty minutes at the tire shop and the repair is complete … No charge. Fantastic Monday’s list is completed Tuesday morning and we are leaving for San Diego on schedule.

Psalm 34:19 “Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the LORD delivereth him out of them all.” (KJV)

            I don’t know about you but I always have a little difficulty seeing myself as “Righteous”. Especially in situations that push me out of my comfort zone, or in those situations where my expectations are not realized. (O.K. how many people besides me feel I have just described your whole life?) There is hope when we turn to the Bible and apply its principles to our lives. If we identify ourselves with Christ we can be “Satisfied”. Because of His promises.

Deuteronomy 31:6 “Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.” (KJV)

            Challenges, problems, setbacks, they happen to everyone. When they happen we are tempted to react. Sometimes those reactions cause us to revert to our former nature. Remember the Son of God has set us free from our former nature. God supplies all our needs and we can find TRUE, LASTING, and JOYOUS satisfaction in our relationship with Christ.

1 Corinthians 10:13 “There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it.” (KJV)

John 8:36 “If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.” (KJV emphasis added)

1 Timothy 6:6-8 “A devout life does bring wealth, but it's the rich simplicity of being yourself before God. Since we entered the world penniless and will leave it penniless, if we have bread on the table and shoes on our feet, that's enough.” (MSG)

Hebrews 13:5 “Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.” (KJV)

            Finding “Satisfaction” has more to do with where we are focusing our search and who is beside us on the journey, and much less to do with the things we acquire on the trip. We have come a long way from the hymn, “Mansion Over the Hilltop”. I’m just not sure we have been traveling in the right direction. I’m working on returning to finding, “Satisfaction” in a life-giving relationship with Christ. Are you willing to make the same commitment? Don’t get lost in the details. Hold on to the TRUTH.

John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (KJV emphasis added)

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