I was traveling on business awhile back, and had worked a long day. I was too tired to go eat anywhere, so I just picked up some dinner and took to my hotel room. After getting settled in, I realized I didn’t have anything to drink. I wandered up and down the hotel hallway until I found the vending machine… only to discover it was out of order. So I hopped in the elevator and went up a floor…only to discover the vending machine on that floor didn’t have the one thing I wanted.
With a sigh, I got back on the elevator and went down two floors. Thankfully, this one was working and well-stocked. But when I went to buy a drink, I discovered I hadn’t brought enough money.
Have you ever had one of those days?
Here’s why I bring it up: I only go to a vending machine when I need something. I’ve never gone to a vending machine when I wasn’t thirsty. I’ve never scoured hotel hallways just to check them and and look them over. I only interact with them when I want something.
Imagine a young man telling a young lady on their first date that he wants to swing by the laundry mat and watch her do a couple of loads. Then, if she could be so kind as to demonstrate her ironing and cooking skills. After all, he needs someone with those skills.
That’s not a date, that’s a job interview! There’s no love or romance there. He’s treating her like a vending machine.
But you know what? I think I treat God like that most of the time.
Every time I run to Him, it’s when I need something. Every time I interact with Him, I usually want something. Most of my prayers are need-oriented.
How about you? Is God nothing more than a vending machine to you?
Do you ever run to God…when you don’t need something? Do you ever spend time in prayer…without asking for stuff? Do you ever just bask in His presence…tell Him how you’re feeling…or thank Him for who He is?
More often than I’d care to admit:
- I do my best praying when I have a desperate need.
- I trust God fully, only when He removes all the other things in my life I tend to depend on.
- I rarely seek God with my whole heart when everything is going well.
When I do those things, I’m treating God like a vending machine.
But when God describes His relationship to us in the Bible, He doesn’t use the words “vending machine.” He uses the words: love, and marriage. Those two words and the concepts they represent are the closest our little minds can get to understanding how God feels about us.
Let’s not allow our relationship with God to become a need-oriented interaction with a vending machine. Let’s rediscover a passionate love relationship with the One who cares more about us than we will ever be able to comprehend.
Take some time today to pray without asking for anything. Take a moment to think about how incredibly in love with you God is. You are His bride, and He is passionate about you.