Okay guys, I need to be honest. I want to be real.
I’m super needy.
I know, I know, that’s not a very cool thing to say! And all of us want to be able to say, “I’m not needy,” or “I don’t need anyone’s help!”
But it’s not true. Every single one of us is incredibly needy, and I’ll prove it to you right now.
Think about when you first wake up in the morning — what’s the first thing you think when your eyes open? I know what I think first. I think, “I need coffee…right now!” (Alright, so some of you don’t drink coffee, good for you. The rest of us need to wake up somehow, and we need caffeine to get going).
We need food to eat.
Every day, we have a list of things we need to accomplish.
If you have kids, sometimes you feel like you need to sleep late so you have some extra time.
You need that e-mail to come in.
You need to get that one thing done.
You need to get a new boss.
You need to get a new job and more money.
That’s just the practical stuff! What about all the emotional needs we all have?
You need people to be nice to you.
You need people to to affirm you.
You need people you feel like you belong with.
Here’s the thing: if you look back over your life, what’s one thing that remains constant day-in and day-out? Yeah, your neediness! Because even when you got that thing you thought you wanted – that relationship, that promotion, that car – it didn’t satisfy fully, and you still had needs the next day. We all have needs woven into the fabric of who we are.
Jesus taught us something that’s really provocative and a total bummer to our kingdom of self: if we want to be his disciples, we need to deny ourselves, take up our cross and follow him.
Can we agree Jesus is so crazy and revolutionary sometimes? Really, what he’s saying is that if you live your life seeking to fulfill all your own needs, the things that you feel you want will never actually fulfill you.
So what can we do? How do we follow Jesus and satisfy our deepest longings?
Well, my friends, following Jesus and being fulfilled are one and the same.
In Matthew 5, Jesus said, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be filled.”
I’m here to tell you having your needs met will never be enough. You will only be satisfied when you hunger and thirst for the gift of God’s righteousness that comes from Jesus.
And when you receive then you will be satisfied.
That’s where I want us to all focus this week – receiving Jesus. God doesn’t fault us for our needs! He wants our needs and longings to track us back to receiving more of himself. And then he wants to take us from focusing on all of our own selfish things that we think we need, which changes from day to day. And he wants to put our desire and focus on what God is up to. Then we can step into the beautiful work God is doing in our lives and in the world today.