Friday, October 21, 2011

Four Corners of Human Need

INBUILT WITHIN our humanity is the need to be right, happy, prosperous, and free. Our spirits are hardwired these four ways and we defeat only ourselves if we deny these spiritual urges.

If we want to be right, we need to be honest. If we want to be happy, we need to have courage. If we want to be prosperous, we need to be diligent. If we want to be free, we need to let go.

An important differentiation: these needs are achievable any time. God makes it possible, but it depends on us.

Corner One: Being Right

Nobody likes to be wrong. Pride is what we feel when we are resistant in our wrongness; shame is what we feel when we admit to the wrong.

God designed us to seek and promote truth, and when we don’t achieve this there is a sharp dissonance felt. People also want to feel right even when they are doing wrong. The urge is still the same; even if they know they are wrong.

Being right is not an “I told you so” issue so much as it’s a matter of being in alignment with ourselves and, further, with God.

A simple truth: We can be right more often when we’re honest.

Corner Two: Being Happy

The thought of incongruence is sadness. We yearn to be happy, yet many people strive to reach happiness, forlornly, without such a necessary input as courage.

God can’t give us happiness—the blessings of joy—without us, in turn, committing to do those things that help us achieve contentment.

Being “happy” is not the motivation, but the by-product of courage to identify and run after the only things that can make us happy. Material things take us away from happiness; spiritual things, on the other hand, heap happiness all over us.

It takes courage to sacrifice those things that promise happiness but fulfil little within us. We know those things that make us feel empty will not provide happiness.

Corner Three: Being Prosperous

Let’s get off on the right foot; this type of prosperity is nothing to do with material wealth and the accumulation of things. We are talking about the prosperous spirit, which is the feeling of prosperity.

Yet, we cannot ever be prosperous without being diligently active to create or enable the prosperity that God wants to give us; indeed, that which our Designer set aside for us—even before we were conceived.

It’s peculiar. Spiritually, we are already prosperous if we know God; yet we may not see it. A committed plan to do the will of God, in diligence, will create feelings of prosperity within. It’s the only prosperity that matters.

Corner Four: Being Free

No one seems to like the word “sacrifice.” But if we want to be free we need to learn to let go. Like the constant evaporation of water on a lake, life is a continuous stream of losing things.

Whenever things have their way of holding us, we are bonded—captive to an inanimate object or idea. This is madness because we want to negotiate our freedom against the eternal laws of God.

The only way of being free is to let go. “Of what?” you might say; anything and everything that compromises your pure focus on God. Only God can fill out deeper needs.


These four corners of human need—to be right, happy, prosperous, and free—point us in the indelible direction of God.

The Lord made us with these needs, and these are achievable much easier than we think; easy when we trust and obey the Creator. We were built this way. It is best accepted.

Of these four needs, which one presents you with most opportunity for better satisfaction?

© 2011 S. J. Wickham.

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