Welcome to the blog of author Marlo Schalesky!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Are You Settling for Less?

Hi Friends,

As we prepare for Thanksgiving this year, I'm thinking about how we so often settle for less than the full meal God is preparing for us. Here's an excerpt from my next book, REACHING FOR WONDER to contemplate as we seek to sit down at the table ...

Good Enough is Not Good Enough
         What do we do when all we want is healing, but the more we pray the worse things seem to become? Usually we convince ourselves to settle for less.
         I’m reminded of the many times my young children have tried to sneak a snack right before dinner. They’re hungry. They just want the hunger to stop. They want the immediate need fixed. So, Jayna (somehow it always seems to be Jayna!), tiptoes into the pantry and very quietly and unobtrusively, pulls out a bag of chips. Then, she opens them ever so gently and begins to nibble. And chips satisfy her hunger for a moment, but they don’t cure the real hunger within. They don’t nourish her deep inside, and they spoil her dinner.
         Meanwhile, I’m preparing a full meal for her complete with foods that satisfy, meats, cheese, bread, milk, vegetables, fruit, everything that will a body needs to be healthy and happy. I’m setting the table so we can sit around it as a family and share life and relationship. I’m planning not just an empty experience that satisfies the minimum need but, as a loving parent, I’m wanting and preparing to give more, to give a healthy, whole, fully satisfying eating experience.
         Jayna would settle for a bag of chips. I want to give her a whole dinner sitting around a table, enjoying each other and the meal. As C.S. Lewis says in The Weight of Glory, “It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak. … like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased.”
         So why do we a settle for a bag of chips when God is preparing a full meal? Do we think we are more likely to receive when we minimize our request? Just heal me, Lord, and I won’t ask for anything more. I’ll settle for the minimum. I think that way sometimes.
         But this isn’t what God wants. He’s not satisfied with the minimum fix that allows us only to go back to go back to what we’ve know. He is determined to give us a real meal. What he wants for us is something more, something new, something wondrous. An actual encounter with the living God!

         He will settle for nothing less. We shouldn’t either.