Need. Want. Deserve.

Need. Want. Deserve.

Life's greatest disappointments, frustrations, or struggles in some way involve these words.

I need a vacation.
I want my home to be less chaotic.
I deserve a break.
I need a new wardrobe.
I want some room in the budget.
I deserve a little fun.
I need you to understand me.
I want to be heard.
I deserve some true friends.
I need to upgrade.
I want the latest.
I deserve ease and comfort.

"There is within the human heart a tough fibrous root of fallen life whose nature is to possess, always to possess. It covets "things" with a deep and fierce passion...The roots of our hearts have grown down into things, and we dare not pull up one rootlet lest we die. Things have become necessary to us, a development never originally intended. God's gifts now take the place of God, and the whole course of nature is upset by the monstrous substitution." 
A.W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God

I don't tend to think of myself as a materialistic person (who does!?) but when I look at the things that trouble me the most, they usually include some version of what I believe I must have in order to be happy. Sometimes they are things. Sometimes they are ideas. But rarely is it God alone.

Our loving Father is concerned with our needs.
He does care about our desires.
...but our merciful Savior does not give us what we deserve.

Where I deserved separation, He's given me intimacy.
Where I deserved punishment, He's given me grace.
Where I deserved no second chances, He continues to sanctify.
Where I deserved the full consequence of all my choices, He guards and protects.
Where I deserved shame, He has offered blessing.

What need do I have that Christ has not met?
What desire do I have that Christ has shown himself greater than?
What do I deserve that that He hasn't taken on Himself that I might be spared?

"The man who has God for his treasure has all things in One. Many ordinary treasures may be denied him, or if he is allowed to have them, the enjoyment of them will be so tempered that they will never be necessary to his happiness."
A.W. Tozer, The Pursuit of God

May we possess God, and God alone. May we be satisfied in Him. And, may the fibrous root of desire and self-centeredness be removed and replaced vine-abiding life. May its roots drink deeply from the all-satisfying, all-worthy Life-giver, that we might bear true fruit--not unto ourselves, but to His glory.


  1. Ruth, I appreciated this today. My daily reading prior to reading your post today was the passage about the vine and the branches which you so beautifully tied into your writing. So good. So what I need to hear today. Thank you!

    1. I so needed the reminding as well, Kate. It's so easy to think that our sustenance comes from being rooted to something other than Christ himself. Hope you have a lovely day!

  2. amen, girl. amen. it's the opposite of what the world says... sometimes even what the christian world says.

    1. I agree, Carissa. I often realize that it's not that I'm completely worldly in my thinking, but that I'm simply not treasuring the VERY BEST. I can want so much (even good stuff) instead of Christ--and I'd be missing it completely.

  3. Ruth, these are wise words indeed, thank you for sharing. A.W. Tozer is one of my favorite authors. I like how you pointed to the root of our dissatisfaction and also brought out what we really deserve and what God has given us instead. The Gospel is so beautiful!

  4. beautifully written. thank you.
    i'm doing beth moore's deuteronomy study, and today she talked about the blessings and the curses. what a great reminder that Christ became what we deserved...the curse...and now we have life. oh, that i'd remember it!

  5. My husband and daughter are in Honduras with Compassion Int'l this week and the stories and pics that they are sharing are breaking my heart wide open. This post was a beautiful thing to put right between all that we "have" here and all that they "have" there. They are full of joy and contentment and we, well not so much. Thank you for the beautiful words <3