Wednesday March 23, 2011
Have you ever had a desire that was so tempting in your life that you were willing to do anything to fulfill that desire? It may have been a car that you had your heart set on buying. It may have been a person you wanted to date and you were willing to do or say anything to go out with this person. It could have been a large purchase of a house that caused you to overstep your budget to get it. Or a passion to play golf. Acquire a large sum of money. None of those things in and of themselves are wrong. Then you might be asking yourself, ‘Why then are you talking about these things?’ It’s not the thing or person that is wrong, but where your desire is placed that determines whether it becomes a problem.
In I Kings 11:1-2, there is a problem that developed in the life of Solomon. “King Solomon, however, loved many foreign women besides Pharaoh’s daughter—Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Sidonians and Hittites. They were from nations about which the lord had told the Israelites, “You must not intermarry with them, because they will surely turn your hearts after their gods.” Nevertheless, Solomon held fast to them in love.” In this passage there are two words that stick out.
The first word is ‘however’ which means that Solomon took a detour in his life from what the Lord wanted him to take. The Lord warned him not to go in this direction. Yet his desire for women (let’s tell it like it is–sexual gratification) took priority over God’s plan and direction. The second word is ‘nevertheless’. God gave Solomon the warning not to marry foreign wives because of their worship of other gods and his temptation to be drawn to those gods. Nevertheless implies that the desire for other things overshadowed the desire to follow God’s directive. It is a mindset that basically says, “No matter what you tell me, I’m going to do what I want to do come hell or high water.”
It reminds me of the passage in Mark 4:19 where Jesus is talking about the four kinds of soil and describes the third soil as individuals that were fruitful at one time, “but the worries of this life, the deceitfulness of wealth and the desires for other things come in and choke the word, making it unfruitful.” Whenever our desire takes presidence over God’s plan for our lives, we will take a detour into a life that ultimately will never satisfy. For you see, Solomon had 700 wives and 300 concubines and they were never enough to satisfy his sexual desire.
What tempts you on this journey? All of us can allow our desires to overpower God’s plan for our life. It’s important the road you choose on this journey on a daily basis. Desires are powerful influencers in our direction.