Monday, June 12, 2017

You Can Always Get What You Want

Yes, Stones fans. You are correct. The title of my article represents my take with apologies to Mick Jagger and Keith Richards. It is taken from their song title, “You Can’t Always Get What You Want.” Americans of different and diverse socio, religious and political background clamor and protest for what they desire, that is, they want. Those desires and wants are not necessarily wrong, immoral, evil or illegal.

Those desires or wants may be genuinely or disingenuously about themselves as individuals or for something greater than themselves. Here are some of those desires and wants on the minds of Americans and for which they will actively protest, riot, rant, and in some instances, speak coherently about some of them. Among some of the coveted desires as well as those things which they do not want is healthcare, rights for lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgender, sharia law, immigration, jobs, gun control, another president and the list can go on.

What do you want? What do you not want? Often, if you listen to some of the voices behind the banners and slogans, the parameters are undefined and elusive. There is no doubt as to their passion for or against a politician, an ideology or some belief. The reason why these are undefined and elusive is because they are the emotional expressions of the heart. Does this mean emotions are wrong? No, it means that emotions being the fickle, vacillating human urges of the heart can hardly be relied on to convey a message with words to others as to why you want what you want and why it is that you would not stop short of taking from someone else.

Yes, you can get what you want. Never mind that what you want might be at all costs on anyone and anything. This is not difficult to comprehend. We were once children. We have observed children. When they do not get what they want we have seen and heard their unbridled fits of rage and crying.

What drives those desires may be fear or greed. Then, there are others whose drive is neither of those and they go undetected by the undiscerning. They have no desire or genuine interest for what the individual wants and desires for themselves or America. The admitted guiding principle (I know that makes it sound lofty and noble) of many rock musicians was that they were not in it for the music which their listeners liked and which turned out to reward quite well. They were in it for the sex and drugs. Granted their desires were reflexive on themselves and not necessarily on others, but it is a rare musician whom years later in post rehab days will boast that that the fruition of their desires for sex and drugs, that is, of the emotions of the heart and following their heart came to something good for them. It was likely that during their rehab they saw for the first time their fame and wealth as the darkness which blinded them to the truth of how great they had been consumed by chasing after what they wanted.

What is true in a small setting is probably or likely true in the bigger setting. What I mean is if one is not able to live and relate in the small setting of a one-on-one relationship as in marriage with their spouse because when they have different wants and desires, then it is likely that that is the very much same way that individual responses in arenas of socio, political and faith beliefs.

Love works in that marriage above and beyond differences. Love is not selfish and does not seek its own desires, but seeks the benefit of the other person. I expect some might attempt to justify their protests and readiness to fight at all cost for others. It is up to you, the individual, to examine the genuineness or disingenuous desires of your own heart. What others may say they want and what you may want do not be equal, but to quote Jagger and Richards, “if you try sometimes well you just might find You get what you need.”

The reality of life for many people is that needs often take a far, distant second to what they need. They get caught up and consumed by the temporal present. Eternity for them seems as undefined and elusive as their desires and wants. When Jesus said, “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly” he was talking as much about eternity as this present life. Jesus in no way glossed over or sweetened the reality of death by crucifixion, because that is his call for you to take up your cross and follow him. It is hardly about self and its desires and wants. Yes, you are correct. Who in their right might would want or desire to be crucified? But, that question is neither right or wrong minded. It reflects the human tendency to be driven by the undefined and undefinable desires of the heart. It is that which will continue to drive your life to get what you want rather than what you need.

29 Jesus answered, "The foremost is, 'HEAR, O ISRAEL! THE LORD OUR GOD IS ONE LORD; 30 AND YOU SHALL LOVE THE LORD YOUR GOD WITH ALL YOUR HEART, AND WITH ALL YOUR SOUL, AND WITH ALL YOUR MIND, AND WITH ALL YOUR STRENGTH.' 31 "The second is this, 'YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR AS YOURSELF.' There is no other commandment greater than these." (The gospel according to Mark chapter 12)

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