He did not pick what he wanted at that moment. He picked what was best. This is what I kept thinking when I was out to eat with someone the other day. It was something so subtle, yet so powerful. As the waiter asked for our order, one of the guys I was with ordered a turkey burger. The waiter said, “do you want cheese on that?” The guy said, “Cheese, I want a real burger with cheese and bacon. But no thanks on the cheese. I will pass.” Then the rest of us ordered. He wanted something else and he wanted right then, but he chose the best option. The one that yielded the best long term fruit and growth. The one that was not the most pleasurable, but the most beneficial. And how did he do this – two words – self-denial…or maybe two other words – delayed gratification. What if more of us took this approach to our diets? To exercise? To our marriage? To our parenting? To our pursuit of God? What if we worked at denial of self and a denial of the immediate to better ourselves in the long run? And how would this help us even be more effective at bettering others?
I believe Jesus would have done the same thing – self-denial I mean (not the cheese thing). Delayed gratification is an idea that I haven’t thought of, but it makes sense when I think about it. I should never dwell on me when other people are concerned with my actions.
If we have hope, we can delay gratification……in Jesus we have hope!
Just choosing the right foods for health is quite a challenge. If eating right can help us so much physically….then imagine how much making the right choices for our spirit can impact our eternity!!! Staggering thought.