Small Group Tools
Contemporary Comments 2005
[Title] Lord of Our Desires
[Texts] Romans 8: 4, 5; Galatians 5: 24, 25; Genesis 1 and 2; Galatians 3:1-6; Matthew 4: 1,2; Mark 1:12; Luke 4:1; John 3:3; Galatians 5:25
[Use] July 23, 2005
Desire. Is it good or evil?
Lance Armstrong's desire to overcome cancer has given hope to millions. Profits from the sales of his yellow rubber "Live Strong" wrist bands make it possible for the Armstrong Foundation to encourage millions affected by the disease to live strong through cancer, to get the research, education, advocacy that they need to get through to survivorship.
Armstrong is currently in the lead of the Tour de France bike race. He and his team will scale some of the toughest mountain terrain this week. One of Lance's key cheerleaders along the route is rocker Sheryl Crow, whom he is currently dating. Armstrong and his wife are divorced. Perhaps touring on a bike and not crashing was a greater desire for Armstrong than to ride through the rough terrain of marriage and survive.
Another lesser known rider, Tom Yonker, is pedaling along the Tour de France route this week too. He's not competing; rather, he's fulfilling the desire of his wife's dream to travel the route she had trained so hard to ride. Tom's wife's ashes are tucked into his back jersey pocket. 
Max (Maxine) Yonker died May 21 at age 42 after enduring two bouts of cancer, two mastectomies and reconstructive surgery. Despite her illness, she managed to ride along the Tour route in 2003 to raise thousands of dollars for the Lance Armstrong Foundation. She was an ardent believer, her husband said, in Armstrong's "Live Strong" motto. She lived with a desire to beat the disease.
With a political debate brewing this week in Washington, D.C. it is the desire of both The New York Times and The Washington Post to be the first to report the facts leading to any deceptive political cover-up. Both papers published front-page articles this week alleging that Karl Rove did speak to conservative columnist Bob Novak before Novak wrote an article revealing the CIA identity of Valerie Wilson. Both articles claim that Rove had confirmed to Novak that Valerie Wilson worked at the CIA. The desire of more than just journalists in Washington, D.C. is to find evidence of who, if anyone, is lying or covering something up.
This past Friday night bookstores and libraries lured parents and their children to their facilities by providing a party-like atmosphere in the hours before 12:01 a.m. for the release of J.K. Rowling's "Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince," the 6th book in the Harry Potter series. The Half-Blood Prince contains 672 pages. In spite of its length, some educators and parents credit the suspense-filled books with giving children the desire to read.
Rowling's publisher, Scholastic, Inc., has another desire in mind: money in the bank! Scholastic printed a total of 13.5 million of the Half-Blood Prince books. According to the New York Times, a record-breaking 6.9 million copies were sold during the first 24 hours the book was available. The list price was $29.99 US, however stores discounted the book to attract early buyers. The publisher estimates that Americans spent $117 million in the first 24 hours. Unauthorized and illegal copies were sold by those who desired to make a quick buck. Used copies and a scanned PDF version showed up immediately. 
Desire. Is it good or evil? That depends.
We were created to have desires. Before sin the desires of Adam and Eve were gifts from God.
Since that time a day-by-day battle between God and Satan is being fought over us. For every good desire God gives us there seems to be an evil counterpart to lure us in another direction. Thankfully Christ Jesus is willing to shield us from or help us go through evil, minute-by-minute. All we have to do is to ask. As with our thoughts, if God is not Lord of our desire, we more easily fall into traps made by Satan.
Psalms 37:4 reminds us that we are to take delight in the Lord and He will give us the desires of our heart. He will help us with ALL of our desires. That's a promise.