What Does it Mean to be Desperate?
Have you ever been desperate to see something happen? I’ve been thinking lately of the good side of desperation. I suppose often when we think of the word, “desperate,” it has a negative connotation. We don’t necessarily seek to be in a state of desperation.
I’d like to share an experience I had with Dawn and Hannah a few years ago. The three of us went to an event at a church in the area. None of us had ever been to this event before and we didn’t really know what to expect, but we thought we’d give it a try. The service started with a long period of worship, which I enjoyed. Yet the people there were more emotional and more expressive than I’m used to. I felt uncomfortable in some ways because it was something different for me.
I believe now reflecting back on the time that I had an attitude, which adversely affected my ability to worship. In other words, I became cynical, and it wasn’t a good attitude by any means.
Later as I thought through my experience I felt like the Lord gently nudging me, and it hit me that these people were desperate to know God in a deeper way and to have an encounter with him. It also caused me to see that sometimes when I worship it can become a little stale, and I don’t have that sense of longing for the Lord. I don’t believe that I necessarily need to worship in the same way, but I do believe that I should be desperate to know God. I want to long to know him in a deeper and more profound way. At times I think that has been missing from my life.
I long for more. I must admit that when our daughter, Hannah moved to heaven it was a kind of wake up call. It’s like, this has to be real. I need a deeper relationship with my Lord. I can’t live one more day without him.
I’ve served in ministry for more than 30 years now, and I suppose one might think that someone in ministry shouldn’t have these issues. Yet, there’s always a danger whether we are in ministry or not of becoming pharisaical, of losing our first love. Not that I had lost my first love, but I wasn’t where I wanted it to be. I wasn’t as hungry as I was when I first came to Christ.
Being Undignified in Worship and Celebration
When people are desperate they may not always do things in the most dignified ways. We see examples of this in the Bible, and yet God rewarded their willingness to humble themselves.
In 2 Samuel 6, David was leaping and dancing before the Lord in celebration as they brought the ark of the covenant back to Jerusalem. His wife, Michal, despised him when she saw him. David responded in verse 22 saying, “I will make myself yet more contemptible than this, and I will be abased in your eyes. But by the female servants of whom you have spoken, by them I shall be held in honor.” David was willing to unabashedly worship the Lord with his whole being. How often do we worship in the same manner?
Another example in the New Testament is the blind beggar in Luke 18 who cried out to Jesus as he was going by. He cried out, “‘Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!’ And those who were in front of rebuked him, telling him to be silent. But he cried out all the more, ‘Son of David, have mercy on me!'” (Luke 18:39) Jesus stopped and healed the blind beggar. He went on to compliment him and he told him that his faith had made him well.
There are many more examples in the Bible of people who were willing to humble themselves and even take the risk of looking like a fool, and the Lord rewards their faith.
Growing to Have a Desperate Love
I don’t think it’s easy to have this reckless abandon for the Lord. I pray that even though it’s uncomfortable that I will have this type of desperate love and desire to know and encounter the living Christ.
I’m grateful that we just celebrated His resurrection. Christ defeated death, Satan, and sin on the cross so that we might live and experience life abundantly. It’s not just life, but an abundant and rich life. Thank you, Jesus!
In His Grip, Dave