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Will God supply our needs or our wants?

Will God supply our needs or our wants?

by Frank King


I hear it referenced often, in conversations and in written devotions: God will take care of our needs.

There’s certainly Scripture to back up that belief. In his letter to the Philippians, Paul wrote “My God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in glory in Christ Jesus” (ESV).

That news is not only good, it’s extraordinarily comforting during life’s trying moments. But it’s not as simple as it seems, especially for us living in well-off North America.

Exactly what are our needs? Most of us have been conditioned with all kinds of assumptions. But who says that’s how God thinks?

Here are some examples from my own life:

• I have a music collection of more than 700 compact discs. Do I need that many? Do I need even one CD? Certainly not.

• My wife and I each have a vehicle. Could we get by without two? Could we get by with no vehicle at all? It would certainly make our lives more difficult and our daily commutes far longer, but the fact remains: we don’t need vehicles.

• I’ve been an amateur photographer for more than 30 years (ya, I’m old). I have a pretty good quality camera, two lenses, six filters and a tripod capable of considerable punishment. Photography enriches my life and, when I’m out making sunrise or sunset pictures, I often find it’s an act of worship. None of this changes the indisputable fact that when all is said and done, I don’t need photography equipment. Sure, my job involves photography, but I can use the camera at work.

• I’m writing this column on an expensive Apple desktop computer. Besides writing, I use it for social media, to promote my photography and evangelism websites and to process pictures. That means – you guessed it – I don’t need the computer. I can use a public library computer to write columns and do social media.

Perhaps you’re becoming as dismayed as I am when we collectively realize that God isn’t about maintaining our lifestyles. He’s about making us more like His Son and working through us to bring others to faith in Him. Are we getting in line with that, or are we too busy asking Him to supply our wants?

Frank King’s views are his own and do not reflect on his role as manager of media relations for the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association of Canada and Samaritan’s Purse Canada.

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