What Does God Want?

In this world of self-gratification and narcissism, how do we submit to God and prioritize His desires over ours?

In the seventies, Carly Simon belted out the popular ballad, “You’re So Vain.” Today, selfies are de rigueur, and social media accounts are full of photos to show how we look. Today, researchers say we have reached an epidemic of narcissism. But egocentrism isn’t new—it’s rooted in our DNA. Remember Eve in the Garden of Eden? The Bible says since the fall of man we are born with a sinful nature (Romans 5:12) and that we have fleshly desires (Galatians 5:19-21)

But when we accept Christ, we are new beings. We shouldn’t focus on ourselves and our personal wants and desires. Our Creator, our God, should be first and foremost. So how do we realign our thoughts with His?

First, we need to prioritize God, by spending time with Him, reading the Bible and praying. A less of me, more of God attitude is the right one to overcome selfishness and navigate this world as He would have us do.

Second, appreciate that we serve a wonderful, forgiving Father God who wants the best for us. When we struggle with rebellion, as the Israelites did as recorded in the Book of Hosea, God picks us up when we repent and change our ways.

According to the prophet Hosea, God wants the following for us:

Love: “I want you to show love, not offer sacrifices. I want you to know me more than I want burnt offerings” (Hosea 6:6 NLT).

Redemption: “I wanted to redeem them” (Hosea 7:13 NLT).

Healing: “I will heal their waywardness and love them freely, for my anger has turned away from them” (Hosea 14:4 NIV).

Restoration: “In just a short time He will restore us, so that we may live in His presence” (Hosea 6:2 NLT).

Freedom from enemies: “But I will show love to the people of Judah. I will free them from their enemies—not with weapons and armies or horses and charioteers, but by My power as the Lord
their God” (Hosea 1:7 NLT).

Children of a living God: “Yet the time will come when Israel’s people will be like the sands of the seashore—too many to count! Then, at the place where they were told, ‘You are not my people,’ it will be said, ‘You are children of the living God’” (Hosea 1:10 NLT).

This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live and that you may love the Lord your God, listen to his voice, and hold fast to him.
Deuteronomy 30:19-20 NIV
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