Spiritual Dementia: What Do I Need?

Spiritual Dementia: What Do I Need?Ice cream. Mary, my mother-in-law, loves it. She would eat it all day, every day with a few Oreos thrown in for good measure. One thing we’ve learned with her dementia is she’s not aware of basic needs: hunger, thirst, even pain. She gets grumpy or frustrated, but can’t hone in on what’s bugging her. So, we’re battling what she wants, like ice cream, with what she needs.

Like giving her pain meds instead of removing the hated ice pack.

Like giving her water instead of Coke.

Like giving her fruits and veggies instead of brown food.

God does the same with me.

Meet needs instead of wants.

Like more of Him, less of ______.

Like peace through the storm instead of a change in the weather.

Like hurt instead of ease to teach me grace, compassion, and mercy.

Like object lessons, the kind I remember. Forever. The time I broke my wrist, don’t ask, and spent eight weeks in a cast and another six in physical therapy. Talk about lessons in healing, rehab, pain and patience. Or my worst marathon ever—as an answer to my prayer of learning to draw strength from Him and not myself.

God’s focus on needs shows me two things about my spiritual dementia: 1) I don’t really know what I want, and 2) the thing I think I want won’t fulfill me.

My need is for Him. And when I forget, He gently reminds me, “Because the LORD is my shepherd, I have everything I need.” (Psalm 23:1 TLB)

Questions:

How do wants and needs differ?

Do some wants masquerade as needs?

How and what has God taught you through your wants and needs?

Tweetables:

One thing we’ve learned with her dementia is she’s not aware of basic needs: hunger, thirst, even pain. So, we’re battling what she wants, like ice cream, with what she needs. God does the same with me. Click to tweet.

God’s focus on needs shows me two things about my spiritual dementia: 1) I don’t really know what I want, and 2) the thing I think I want won’t fulfill me. Click to tweet.

My need is for Him. And when I forget, He gently reminds me, “Because the LORD is my shepherd, I have everything I need.” (Psalm 23:1 TLB) Click to tweet.

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