Words from a Father

Husband of One, Father of Four

Tag: desire

505. Savage Opportunists

You will be at many parties and functions with alcohol. The easiest way to not be pressured into drinking is to always have the drink of your own choice already in your hand. And if you put it down and look away, don’t drink out of it again. An uncontrolled drink is an opportunist’s Trojan horse; their aim is to brutalize your dignity for their own savage desires.

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472. Desire

Desire to do something does not equal the permission to do it. Desire is not justification for anything.

465. Essay: A Desire Fundamentally Wrong

The human heart is massively hungry, much more so than the stomach. Our longings are true and profound. Yet we have only been offered the shallow sense of momentary satisfaction instead of being given something that would truly sustain. In the absence of such an answer, most of us have bought into the futile pursuits of our society, and we are still utterly bored.

If our primary desire was material or physical only, it could somehow be satisfied physically. Pleasures and pursuits of an earthly nature cannot ultimately satisfy the human heart because our desire is not limited only to the physical realm.

The hunger doesn’t go away and the longing doesn’t disappear, it just finds new ways to resurface. With all the stimulation offered, it is easy to find a new thing each week until we are both overloaded and bored with life at the same time — overloaded with what’s available and bored with every last ounce of it.

Something is fundamentally wrong if you give yourself fully to something and it still leaves you wanting . . . or even worse, ashamed.

This is one reason why Jesus Christ is so intriguing: He is simultaneously too much and never enough, both inexhaustible and overwhelming, nearer than our very breath but categorically distinct from anything conceivable.

402. Quotes: Your Dad on Action and Responsibility

“What you do in the natural, tangible realms of life will either open or close the door to what God wants to do in the supernatural, spiritual realm.”

—Your Dad

332. Essay: Love at First Sight (The Spark)

I don’t think “love at first sight” is a real thing because it beggars the understanding of what love truly is. I certainly understand the appeal of a meant-to-be fated romance, but that has not the depth that twenty or fifty years of loyal marriage contains. First-sighted love is shallow by comparison.

Maybe “spark at first sight” or “connection at first sight” is more accurate. But those phrases won’t catch on because they’re not romantic enough; they’re too factual and miss all the poetry of the feelings of the moment.

But isn’t that the point? Love isn’t a moment. It’s a million moments back to back. Love is the totality of what is looked back on, it’s the reminiscences by those who have always held that one relationship in higher regard than any other, even among myriad opportunities. Love is not fleeting, not temporary, not able to be had with whomever and whenever.

The spark is a welcomed and celebrated first step — an emotional doorway drug — along the path of love, but it is not love itself. The spark is the emotional high. It’s the manic part of the plot, the shallow scenes of the movie that are fun and easy to write but not where the depth of the characters is explored.

We can all recognize the universality of a story that highlights the spark, but we long to connect with the truth revealed in commitment’s depth. Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet is not a romance, but a tragedy — if for no other reason than that they never progress past manic emotionalism and into something more mature. The spark was all they had, and even that was quickly gone.

But compare that with the excellent prelude of the computer animated film Up. The spark between the couple sets the buoyant tone and we get the sense that great love has flourished between them. Their love has matured through life’s ebb and flow, through achievements and disappointments. The movie’s silent prelude leads us through the spark of their romance, the depth of their love, and the pain of losing the same. It is this arc that moves us emotionally and prepares us to suspend disbelief when, as an older man, the main character launches into his greatest journey, all borne from the depth of his commitment. (And notice from Shakespeare that irrational sacrifice is the outcome of the spark’s immaturity, while in Up we see that love puts correct emphasis on enthralled living.)

The spark certainly has its role. It convinces you to lower your defenses, take a risk, and then take responsibility for a real relationship. It’s an invitation into something greater. The spark is an emotional promise, “There is something greater than what you feel right now, something worth the time, worth your heart.” The spark can’t take responsibility for what comes after and how the relationship unfolds, but it is truthful in its promise to open the doorway to love.

The spark says, “Carpe diem,” this is the only moment that matters, the most important moment of your life. But what comes after convinces you that every moment since has mattered, has made your life what it is. This is much more than the spark could ever have given; this is love.

327. Quotes: Paul Rand on Money

“Make lots of money. In your life you will do things you don’t like to do, but they’ll make money. You can use that money to do the things you want to do. It’s really as simple as that.”

—Paul Rand, designer extraordinaire, in a conversation with John Maeda

Others have said it other ways: Money is a tool. Or, when dealing in business, be shrewd as serpents and harmless as doves. Or, don’t be a slave to money; make it serve you instead. Or, be trustworthy with the little you have been given to steward so you can be trusted with much more of your own.

271. Free Will

Your free will is always intact, but it may be limited in scope. Wise is the one who has trained themselves, reining in their desires from creating destruction.

203. Please

Please is a magic word not because it makes things happen, but because it goes with everything.

191. Lashing Out

When you desire to do something but aren’t currently able, lashing out is a sure sign of hurt, jealousy, and frustration.

8. Have to, Want to

Many times we must do what we have to in order to be able to do what we want to in life. Be prepared and comfortable with both.

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