When Reality and Desire Collide

“For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate . . .For I delight in the law of God, in my inner being, but I see in my members another law waging war against the law of my mind . . .” Romans 7:15,22,23

“And he withdrew from them about a stone’s throw, and knelt down and prayed, saying, “Father, if you are willing, remove this cup from me. Nevertheless, not my will, but yours, be done.”. . .and being in an agony he prayed more earnestly; and his sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground . . .” Luke 22:42-44

I would like to say that I have this “spiritual life lesson” down pat.

But that would be a lie.

And it’s not always the “big things” when desire and reality collide that bug me the most. Sometimes it’s the little things that I turn into big things.

Like wearing my earphones and sunglasses EVERY TIME I leave the house. Desire — I can just “buck up” for a short while/it isn’t too loud-bright.  Reality — the more input, the faster my brain tires.

Like going on a short getaway with my husband. . .sigh . . .

Desire — go for a scenic drive in the Shenandoah Mountains, take pictures of beautiful Fall colors, relax, enjoy some nice meals in small out-of-the-way restaurants

Reality — being “up” in the car, even with earphones and glasses, is input, and I can only do about 2 hours before I must completely rest. Not sort of rest. Rest is lying down in quiet doing NOTHING until my brain decides it is ready to go again.

Desire — go on short getaways with my husband, taking pictures of God’s creation and spending time together, now that we are “empty nesters” and can take the time.

Reality — see previous “reality” — the closest I can get to “hiking” the Appalachian Trail is to stand at a mile marker and take a picture . . .after driving for 2 hours or so, I need a major rest. And just thinking about getting on an airplane . . .nope, not happening . . .

So, why this morose post? Because I think we all have areas where desire and reality collide. We live in an imperfect world. We still battle with sin. Life isn’t perfect.

But there is good news.

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin. Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” Hebrews 4:15-16

Jesus understands how desire and reality collide. He does. And, in heaven, desire and reality will never collide again. “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying,  nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.” Revelation 21:4

“The Lord upholds all who are falling and raises up all who are bowed down. . .the Lord is righteous in all his ways and kind in all his works. The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. He fulfills the desire of those who fear him; he also hears their cry and saves them. . . ” Psalm 145:14,18,19

The true reality is that God is righteous in ALL his ways and kind in ALL his works. AND He will fulfill my desires when my desires are aligned with His will! He hears my cries; He understands my frustrations.

I am humbled and blessed beyond measure that my husband of 35 years has taken “for better, for worse, in sickness and in health” seriously. He loves me, and is willing to adjust his desires to my realities. What a gift!

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