But I Want To!

mad kidI can’t tell you how many times I have heard, “But I don’t want to!” or “But I want to!” from those who I have led, especially from kids and youth. Whenever I hear it there is always an echo of my parents voice in the background responding, “It’s not about what you want, it’s about what you need,” or “It’s not about what you want now, it’s about what you need now.”

Sometimes you need to do what you need to do

to be able to do what you want to do.

When you’re an adult speaking to someone younger it seems so easy to recognize the difference between a want and a need. But, it seems even easier to logically piece together the steps of what needs to happen in order to move forward to take care of the need. From the outside looking in there is no problem in seeing how essential it is to put your want on hold in order to take care of what you need to first.

However, when the table is turned and you’re the one who desires to pursue your want instead of your need it doesn’t seem quite so easy. Why is this? Because there is a difference of knowing what is best for you and actually moving your heart and actions into alignment with it. Many too easily allow their wants to dictate to them what they are going to do next, often times at the expense of their greater good.

You see the funny thing about want is it is so circumstantial. You want money because you don’t have any, but more than just money, you need a job, vision, and a sense of destiny to pursue. You want a girl friend, but more than a girl friend you need to first find your satisfaction in God, embrace the friendships around you, and be willing to open your lives to others. You want to feel effective at the end of your day, but you need to actually plan your days out, allocating your minutes into specific places for specific reasons.

The wants are not bad, but change your circusmstances and most often the wants change too. However, many of your needs are foundational. And, they are what eventually build you up to the place where you can actually pursue the wants in a healthy way. Or, once the needs are met, you may even realize that what you wanted was not even worth it or so small compared to what you could actually have.

It’s time to move beyond the realm of “But I don’t want to… or I want to” to the realm of, “I need to and I will…” When you can learn to look at the foundational needs that must be addressed in your life in order to build towards success then you are setting yourself up to be able to move with purpose toward an end, despite any circumstances that may come your way. Don’t be moved by your wants alone, be intentional, be strategic, be a builder.

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