Don’t need me. Desire me.

(for someone who desires our prayers)

I came to my daily time with the Lord this morning. And there is a structure – three moments of “rest” on the way to the verses:

Dear Lord as I come to you today fill my heart and my whole being with the wonder of your presence.
I ask that God, through my freedom may orchestrate my desires in a vibrant loving melody rich in harmony.
I pray for the gift of acceptance and forgiveness.

This morning I asked myself: Would I meet my lover in this mood and expect him/her to “make me” love them? If I showed up and said: “I need you to fill my heart … orchestrate my desires” … make me accept you.” Just what might be their response?

And in that mind I came to today’s verses: Lazarus and the Rich Man. And as I read through this well known passage, He drew me to these two verses:
“But Abraham replied, ‘Son, remember that in your lifetime you received your good things, while Lazarus received bad things, but now he is comforted here and you are in agony. And besides all this, between us and you a great chasm has been set in place, so that those who want to go from here to you cannot, nor can anyone cross over from there to us.’ Luke 19:25-26

And then He whispered “God Shopping, Paul?”

And as I wondered what He meant – we shared these “sensory full” films:

Window Shopping. That retail experience where there is nothing between you and the goods you browse. You can touch them, try them for size, put them back, move on. Repeat (and repeat and repeat). I have heard some people actually enjoying spending time this way. I know people who spend the whole day doing that. And when you ask: “What did you get?” – they calmly (calmly!) say: “Nothing.”

Relationship Shopping. That overnight experience in the same bed where there is nothing between you but a bad mood. You can touch them, you can cuddle them, you can get “over it” (whatever it is you can’t get over). But you stay one side of the bed, and they stay the other. Nothing between you but a chasm of emptiness. I have done that quite a few times. In a huff and a grump – with a seething expectation that “they” make the first move.

God Shopping. That lifetime experience of having a relationship with God Soft Hands Guiding Spirit Jesus without ever touching. A relationship of “knowing about” rather than knowing. A relationship of “toenail worship” rather that the worship of desire. A relationship based on “come on God – prove yourself – make me love you – make me need you.”

This morning He whispered, and kept on whispering:

I can do as much heavy lifting as needed. Except I don’t need. Love does not need. Look across the bed. Look across the chasm. There is no “heavy lifting” Paul. There is only an imaginary distance you place between us. And because it is imaginary – why do you allow it to be such a burden, a cross, a hard path, a weight on your shoulders? I have no need to lift that from you. Nor should you.

Needs makes Love a burden, a cross, a hard path, a weight on your shoulders. Need makes it too much for you do on your own. Need imagines that imaginary chasm, that space in the bed, that “too impossible to cross.” Need is Fear. Need is Guilt. Need is a Burden.

That is why Love never Needs. Love only Desires. Desire Me as I desire you. That is Love.

Please don’t let your “imagination of distance” between us become an “eternity of distance” between us. The time you have for sowing is but a short season, and what you sow now, you reap for eternity.

I Desire You! I always have and I always will. Don’t need Me. Desire Me.


Taken from “Lazarus and the Rich Man”:
Luke 16:19-31


25 thoughts on “Don’t need me. Desire me.

  1. Oh my heavens, Paul, my mind exploded at this line….”Love does not need”


    I have been thinking of this lately. How we make every relationship about our personal ‘needs’. I have almost come to despise the word ‘need’ because of it. All it does is leave the person (speaking from my own personal selfish heart now) with an entitlement complex.

    There is only one thing needful–desire me, Lord!

    He already has.

    • Rebekah – “an entitlement complex” – what a lovely description! For some time this “need” thing has been running around as well. And each time we chew the fat, He takes a new angle and facet.

      (you ever have times when “grumpy” might be a good description of a mood – and yet He seems to use that in weird and wonderful ways – and spins the direction of the conversation with that mood just like a master plate spinner?)


  2. “That is why Love never Needs. Love only Desires. Desire Me as I desire you. That is Love.” Wow…lots of great stuff here!! Between your “shopping” illustrations and “toenail worship”…thanks for sharing your whispers with us 🙂

  3. “Needs makes Love a burden, a cross, a hard path, a weight on your shoulders. Need makes it too much for you do on your own….” Oh, yeah, brilliant.
    Isn’t it interesting how much our prayers change when we actually treat God like a love relationship instead of a study project.. Love your insights, brother. 🙂

  4. You’ve opened my understanding to the difference between need and desire in love. Thank you for blessing me with this Paul.

  5. Hi Paul,

    I have been mulling over this post for days now. You know me, often coming at things from a different angle, wanting to comment, not quite sure how; wanting to understand and finding myself refuting. Am I deliberately being awkward? Please humour me, be playful and maybe together we can find out what’s bothering me…

    God desires me. I desire God. It sounds great! It is active, enthusiastic, confident, energetic, mature, face to face. It sounds dynamic and sexy.

    God needs me. I need God. It sounds…well…needy!

    In my view there is nothing wrong with heartfelt desires. Also, I think, there is nothing wrong with genuine needs. A need is raw, honest, authentic.

    Window shopping: perhaps the person window shopping has no money to buy, they need to weigh up carefully before they purchase, and be sure the item will do as it is to last them a long time, they are being careful so as not to get into debt. Or perhaps the need is nothing to do with shopping. Perhaps they live alone and just need to be out in the community. Perhaps they just need is to interact with another human being during a long day.

    Relationship shopping: Desire or need? Perhaps on this occasion to cross the chasm the desire to touch would be best resisted. What might be needed is honest communion, listening to each other and the reason behind the pain, looking into each other’s eyes ’the windows to the soul’ with understanding and mutual giving?

    God shopping: When the woman (or Mary in John 12:1-8) washed the feet of Jesus with perfume and wiped His feet with her hair was this toenail worship? Was this the love of desire or need? She was not allowing any distance between them and neither was Jesus by accepting her act in a room full of men. When Jesus prayed in the garden of Gethsemane and he asked his three friends Peter, James and John to stay awake with him was this through desire or need? Jesus wanted them to stay awake. Jesus needed them to stay awake. They fell asleep.

    I looked up the word desire in my thesaurus-similar words were ache, ambition, craving, itch, longing, ardour, passion, yearning. It reminded me of a post I wrote a year ago about Longing. I think I will repost it. Please see what you think. Perhaps we are not so far apart.

    I also looked up the word needy. Another word for needy is poor. “Blessed are the poor” Now who was it who said that?


    • Hiya Julia –

      I so love this! Really and truly!! When anyone adds a comment it is wonderful. When you mull for several days and then add such a wondrous comment – that just blows me away! Thank you so much!

      I have been mulling your words all morning. Letting the God vibes ripple through them. Waiting for the moment – the one which always happens. Not a “here you go” moment, but an “ahhh that joins all three of us together moment”: You, Him and me.

      The “look-up” and thesaurus is what He dwelt on. The application of our personal understanding of The Word – in this case of two words: need and desire. And the spectrum of possibilities even within two small words like that.

      And He took me away as I write this to “God” and “Love” – another two small words. And words over which wars have been fought. Still are. Does He do that with you? Sort of like a kite catches a draught and swoops and soars?

      And then I spot you up here. Swooping and soaring. Taken where He wills and riding the currents.

      And there we are: You, Him and me. Enjoying something deeper than a comment, a question, a thesaurus. Maybe enjoying the community of one-ness – the indwelling of union. Taken by something deeper than words can express. Struggling to be precise – wanting so much to share that hard to express joy and am-ness of I Am.

      For I see your words and I can only nod with glee. I see my words and do the same. The words, the meaning, the thesaurus is only a pale image of what you are sensing, feeling and enjoying with Him. And me the same.

      BUT it is important. This precision. This rightness of our words. For they may hinder or trip others. Leave them grounded rather than allow. Fence in rather than free.

      And now I find myself back in front of the screen and keyboard. And left with a very clear thought.

      In this case only, in this conversation only, in this comment only:

      It matters not the word of need or longing or desire or poor. For you – as with me – communicate the “precision within” to express the “joy without”. And for you – longing and need express that far better than for me. For me – desire expresses that far better than need.

      My personal preference is seeing need as “Paul driven” – and that driving to be at the whim of my limited knowledge, my personal experiences, my own definition and sourced from me. For you – that same Julia preference is for the word “need” to answer all those concerns (maybe).

      And He does not seem to care much (it seems to me). Yet He (I think) wishes (maybe even desires) for us to publicly question these things, these details, with love – to reflect in love, disagree in love, and agree in love. Because that is love, and respect, and affection, and one-ness – all those many words of union in Him. And when we talk of Him – how should we talk – other than in love?

      I do not think we are far apart. I think we are of One. And I so love the opportunity to enjoy that one-ness with you!

      Thank you Julia – your words bring me great joy – more than mere words can express here!!

      (and if my soaring misses your question – please do yank me back to earth again!)


      • I think I understand better now. When you wrote your personal preference is “Paul driven’-at the whim of your limited knowledge, personal experience,definition and sourced from you. I think I see. It is on your human level of what you think you need.
        Perhaps why I had a problem is that in my job I have to assess a person’s needs (not desires)! I see people’s needs as being pretty fundamental-like the need for light! Some people find it really hard to live in a dark place.
        Also the need for God! I think I am like St Augustine when he says” Restless is my heart, until I find my rest in Thee.” Thank you too for stopping by at my post. Julia

      • Julia –

        You have allowed me to see more clearly this “word” malarkey. How without understanding and sharing the context, meaning and reasons why one word means what it does – we simply speak different languages to each other – and too easily alienate each other.

        How – maybe – if we allowed each other space to add the context and meaning – how much more would we find agreement where none exists, love where none seems possible, and mutual respect and affection we too easily pass by without awareness.

        Thank you!!

  6. Pingback: Don’t need Me. Desire Me. | Church Set Free

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