I woke up this morning thinking about needs. Well, actually, I woke up thinking about coffee, but that transitioned quickly into thinking about needs. It’s so easy for the things we want to turn into things we think we NEED! As the morning and the day stretched on, I turned my mind to some of the many other needs I’ve encountered lately.
I talked with a friend yesterday who needs $600,000 for a surgery. I thought of how I need a waterproof jacket that isn’t neon yellow. I thought of how I need something to eat for lunch. Whenever such things pass through my mind, I take a visit to India. The people I met and the lives they lead have become a measurement of need to me. I hold other needs up to the ruler of India to see how far they stretch. Do I need a new jacket as much as those people need clean water to drink? Do I need a dishwasher as much as they need food to put on their dishes? Does anybody need anything as much as we all need Jesus?
One needs, (there it is again), to be careful how far down that path we travel. They are good things to consider, but the natural tendency toward guilt is dangerous. It is possible to go too far. We all know that too much of a good thing can be bad, and I think we all ought to explore our own limits as to what we truly need. And then, when perhaps we have eliminated some of those frivolous wants, let us turn and see if there is some way we can meet the real needs of the people around us.
“There are always those who take it upon themselves to defend God, as if Ultimate Reality, as if the sustaining frame of existence, were something weak and helpless. These people walk by a widow deformed by leprosy begging for a few paise, walk by children dressed in rags living in the street, and they think, ‘Business as usual.’ But if they perceive a slight against God, it is a different story. Their faces go red, their chests heave mightily, they sputter angry words. The degree of their indignation is astonishing. Their resolve is frightening.
These people fail to realize that it is on the inside that God must be defended, not on the outside. They should direct their anger at themselves. For evil in the open is but evil from within that has be let out. The main battlefield for good is not the open ground of the public arena but the small clearing of each heart. Meanwhile, the lot of widows and homeless children is very hard, and it is to their defense, not God’s, that the self-righteous should rush.” – Yann Martel
I’ve been considering changing the format of this thing. Specifically, making it more of an actual blog. In the meantime, here’s another story to tide you over. In The Tull is rather gory, and has a few of what people refer to as “gateway curse words.” So be on guard, I guess. Anyway, I’ve been writing a lot lately, not that much has made it here. Would you believe I’m 18 chapters into The Rig?