desperate times call for desperate measures.

What have you done in desperation? We’ve all done something (probably a lot more than a something). The thing about desperation is it clouds our judgment. One thing I’ve learned in my profession is that a lot of intense emotions do. Not to say that emotions are bad or that the strength of an emotion is wrong, we just need to be aware of the potential consequences of…passion.

pas·sion – intense or overpowering emotion such as love, joy, hatred, or anger.

Passion doesn’t necessarily equate to positive. I’ve noticed in my life that I can become desperate for connection. Community is a very significant aspect of my livelihood and I will earnestly seek relationships that have the potential for great depth. Now, before I continue, let me clarify that this is definitely not a bad thing or quality that I possess. However, when the emotion of desperation comes sneaking into the mix, judgment often goes out the window. The harmful consequence of this action is placing others before God. Let’s be honest ~ it is HARD to connect to God. It takes discipline, consistency, faith, and perseverance. And so, when I begin to experience a strong bond with one of my fellow earthly dwellers, it is very easy for me to place God in the background.

There’s a flip side to this as well. Just as quickly as the pendulum swings to one side, I desperately try to force it back to the other. In a frantic attempt to connect deeply with God and avoid the potential for harming this relationship by mistakenly substituting an earthly connection for a heavenly one, I fail to account for the requirements of obedience.

Why do we need obedience in the way we love God? For the same reasons we need boundaries in the way we love people ~ balance. Emotions are SO important. They dictate our behavior, they foster connection, and they serve as a significant source of communication (both to self and other). However, when emotions intensify and judgment becomes dangerously obsolete, unhealthy things happen.

Just look at David. He was desperate to experience God’s presence. So desperate, he failed to seek that connection in an obedient manner (2 Samuel 6:1-11). God severely punished David (and more so Uzzah) for failing to abide by His guidelines for dwelling in His presence. But, our gracious God provided David with the opportunity to redeem himself and his actions and to once again experience that relationship he was so desperate for. However, the second time around it was done with balance. Of course, David was able to relish in the emotions of experiencing the presence of God, but he was ever so careful to maintain the healthy balance required in all our relationships by adhering to the necessities of obedience.

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