When obedience to God contradicts what I think will give me pleasure, let me ask myself if I love Him.
It’s really that simple. Do I sometimes think the grass is greener on the other side of the fence? Of course. We all do. There are desires of my heart that God has seen fit to deny—or at least to delay. He has a reason. My Father does not withhold one blessing without giving me something far better in its place. But when my myopic focus gets fixed on one certain thing that I cannot have, the longing breeds discontent and ingratitude within me. That is when I must ask myself, “How much you love God? Can’t you trust your Maker to know what’s best for you? Can’t you find your pleasure in Him and Him alone?”
Elisabeth Elliot’s writing has greatly influenced my life, even as a grown married woman. I truly wish someone had introduced me to her works when I was a teenager, but I am learning that it is never too late to incorporate the principles she teaches: namely, that passion is not sinful and purity is not prudish. Nor are they mutually exclusive. You can have both.