Wednesday, October 2, 2013

i want to be a desperate housewife! ..................{grace-words-wednesday}

america's desperate housewives have received a good bit of attention in the past decade. though they wrapped up their eight seasons on wisteria lane last year, these sassy suburbanites aren't entirely out of the picture. in fact, the desperate housewives series gave name to the more recent series on bravo, the real housewives. maybe you've heard of them. they seem to be popping up everywhere: orange county, new jersey, miami, and atlanta. in fact, last year, before we moved to minnesota (do you think, by the way, there's any talk of a minnesota version?), i even sat next to one at the nail salon back in georgia.

she didn't look all that different from the other ladies in the salon, except that where most customers just brought along a purse and a magazine, she brought with her a small camera crew.

i'll be honest, it wasn't the most relaxing pedicure i've ever had. i guess i just don't relax well with three men and a massive camera pointed a few feet away from my feet. the entire time i worried they'd somehow capture that scunge which was being picked out from behind my toenails ... or maybe the nice little bunion i had forming on my left foot. gross, i know -- sorry, just keeping it real here. anyway, the entire time i had visions of that foul "footage" being broadcast across america. i only hoped they'd blur my face and leave out my name.

the real or desperate or whatever housewife sitting next to me had a bedazzled black t-shirt, but despite all the bling, i couldn't quite read what it said. i'm sure it was something really cute and clever though. i don't remember her name, (you'd have to ask my daughters) but she talked loudly and a lot and quite a bit about herself, and, if i'm being honest here, i'd have to tell you i didn't much care for her at first impression.

except that i sort of want to be her.

yes, you read that correctly. i want to be a desperate housewife.

really, i do.

despərit/ (adjective) 1feeling, showing, or involving a hopeless sense that a situation is so bad as to be impossible to deal with.

okay jody, where are you going with this? i know you're sitting there thinking this time it's official, you've lost me here, girlfriend. what's so great about being desperate? i suppose we don't ever think about "being desperate" as a good thing.

but DESPERATE is the very thing which DRIVES us closer to Christ. 

the truth is, like it or not, we just tend to seek Him faster, harder, deeper when we're desperate. aren't i right?

king david wasn't a housewife, but he sure as heck was desperate. in so many of his psalms he seems to be at the end of his rope ... completely helpless ... utterly hopeless ... in despair over his own sin and even, fighting for his own life.

psalm 143 
Hear my prayer, O Lord; give ear to my pleas for mercy!
In your faithfulness answer me, in your righteousness!
Enter not into judgment with your servant, 
for no one living is righteous before you.
For the enemy has pursued my soul;
he has crushed my life to the ground;
he has made me sit in darkness like those long dead.
Therefore my spirit faints within me;
my heart within me is appalled.
I remember the days of old;
I meditate on all that you have done;
I ponder the work of your hands.
I stretch out my hands to you;
my soul thirsts for you like a parched land. Selah
Answer me quickly, O Lord! My spirit fails!
Hide not your face from me,lest I be like those who go down to the pit.
Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust.
Make me know the way I should go,for to you I lift up my soul.
Deliver me from my enemies, O Lord! I have fled to you for refuge.
Let your good Spirit lead me on level ground! Teach me to do your will, for you are my God!For your name's sake, O Lord, preserve my life!
In your righteousness bring my soul out of trouble!
And in your steadfast love you will cut off my enemies, and you will destroy all the adversaries of my soul,for I am your servant.

if those bold-faced words don't sound desperate, i don't know what does. "i stretch out my hands to you ... my soul thirsts for you ... answer me quickly ... my spirit fails ... deliver me ... o Lord, preserve my life!"

david is fighting for his life.

david is flat on his face.

david is DESPERATE for a redeemer.

and this very real housewife in minnesota sometimes thinks that when life gets kind of comfy on wisteria lane or wherever ... she loses that kind of desire. she forgets that she's completely lost and hopeless and wretched (yes, wretched) without Christ.

i read the verbs of psalm 42 and matthew 5  ... and i have to wonder why i don't always have that kind of insatiable desire for my savior.

"as the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. 
my soul thirsts for God, for the living God. 
when can i go and meet with God?" ~ psalm 42: 1-2

"blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, 
for they shall be satisfied." ~ matthew 5:6

that's what i want. i want to hunger and thirst and even pant after the things of Jesus. but in order for that to happen, this woman needs to see herself as she truly is: starved and dehydrated ... utterly desperate.

... think of the blind man who first experiences light.
... consider the prisoner when his shackles dissolve.
... contemplate the cancer patient declared free.
... how about the wayward son who is welcomed home.
... or the emaciated refugee who is finally fed.

that's desperate.

mark clapson, in an article on "history today," writes this,
"Desperate Housewives, the American TV hit series set in  Wisteria Lane, is just the latest in a long line of portrayals of suburbia to show women as troubled creatures in paradise. Behind the manicured hedges and the weather-boarded walls of their comfortable homes, suburban women are apparently desperate because they are discontented."

dear one, i hope we are a little discontented with what this world has to offer. it's not enough. clapson is correct, our "manicured hedges and weather-boarded walls" aren't going to cut in the end. sure, they're nice now. of course we like our comforts and we long for our little luxuries. i get it. but let's never stop seeing ourselves as the desperate people we truly are. not desperate for stuff, but desperate for a savior.

the desperate housewives series might accurately portray the general discontentment of humanity, but you only have to watch 5 minutes of an episode to realize it doesn't come close to providing the accurate answer for satisfaction.

somehow in all this suburbia desperation they mention everything except the only answer for our dry and discontented lives -- Jesus. Jesus meets us in our desperation and He, alone, satisfies. "blessed are those who hunger and thirst, for they shall be satisfied." when we peer longingly over the fences of our pretend paradises, we realize how hopeless we are in ourselves and in our stuff.  my prayer, that in our hopelessness, we would turn desperate and press into Jesus.

and that's the real hope, the perfect hope, the only hope for this desperate housewife.

{grace-words:  desperate * thirst * hunger * hope * satisfy}

Jesus empty me of myself, that i might hunger and thirst for you.  show me how desperate i truly am, that i might drop so low i can only cling to your feet. it's easy to get caught up in all that is comfortable, but comfort doesn't truly satisfy. help me in my desperation be driven to the One who does -- You, Jesus.  real comfort, real redemption, real hope. a-men.

don't forget to head over to my friend, becky's blog! she's got some {grace words} for you this morning too! you won't want to miss her post on the word of God and a cup of joe!


Becky Crenshaw said...

"the truth is, like it or not, we just tend to seek Him faster, harder, deeper when we're desperate." Oh so right you are, sweet Jody. I am desperate for Him today. Thank you for the reminder and encouragement that this is exactly where I want to be!

Sue Molitor said...

Hi Jody! I am visiting from Becky's blog today. She is a dear friend. I love this! I have recently experienced what being desperate feels like and I love how it leads you into the ever-loving arms of Jesus!!! So true. He is sufficient and honestly I would be desperate all over again to get to know Him in the ways I have lately!! Love this!

Marian said...

I think this is very true, we may call Him differently but it's true that we desperately seek for His approval. The innate intention to please and to be of worthy of His love is undeniably there.