Pleasure On Demand, Not a Good Idea

Pleasure On Demand, Not a Good Idea

In my previous article, I argued that relationships give us the greatest pleasure. What was lost in Eden was regained in Gethsemane. The ravages of disobedience of Adam were negated by the obedience of Jesus on the cross of Calvary. As a result, relationships were restored between God and man and man and woman.

Jesus made way for His redeemed people to enjoy life in all its fullness (John 10:10). However, the little foxes of misplaced priorities, selfish behaviours and deficit mentality continue to spoil the vineyards of our lives. The thief continues to do all that is possible to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. One of his ploys is to dangle the promise of instant gratification and seek pleasure on demand. We must not fall prey to it.

The thief continues to do all that is possible to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. One of his ploys is to dangle the promise of instant gratification and seek pleasure on demand. We must not fall prey to it.

The Devil chose a vulnerable moment to strike Jesus with irresistible temptations. But not for Jesus. The Devil tested Jesus’ ability to resist the temptation to satisfy His hunger with His powers as the Son of God. Jesus did not succumb to it. Again, the Devil tempted Jesus to test God’s love for Him by jumping off the pinnacle of the Temple. The Devil lost again. Thirdly, setting Jesus on a high mountain the Devil tested Him with the allure of all kingdoms of the world.

On all three occasions, the Devil was in a way saying, “All that you can get, get it NOW, the easy way. You don’t have to go through the cross, wait till the second coming and fight for it. It’s yours for the asking, NOW. Only bow down and worship me. Forget about God.” Jesus chased him away by declaring His loyalty to God. He resisted the temptations, chose the cross and waited for the Father to give Him all that was His.

The Devil tempts us in the same way: He wants us to fulfil our needs in our own strength independent of God; he wants us to test God’s love for us; and he wants us to worship him and not God.

The Devil tempts us in the same way: He wants us to fulfil our needs in our own strength independent of God; he wants us to test God’s love for us; and he wants us to worship him and not God. So many people live by the dictum: “I want it, I want it the way I want it and I want it NOW.” With such people, there is no waiting, there is no suffering and there is no cross. They want to bypass God and grab the goodies Satan is dangling in front of them, NOW.

“Wealth gained by dishonesty will be diminished, but he who gathers by labour will increase” (Proverbs 13:11).

Gathering by hard and patient labour takes time. But people want to fulfill their desires NOW without waiting for God to fulfill them. They resort to taking bribes, claiming inflated expenses, evading taxes, cheating, stealing, etc. Nothing satisfies them. They want more and more of money and everything. But they don’t know that “he who is greedy for gain troubles his own house” (Proverbs 15:27). They forget that when we “Take delight in the Lord, He will give us the desires of our heart’ (Psalm 37:4).

Sex is beautiful within the boundaries of marriage. It is a pleasure that God gifted to man and woman to enjoy in a marriage. Many youngsters do not see it this way. They do not want to wait till marriage to enjoy the sexual pleasure. They want it NOW. They feel it and therefore they want it. To enjoy it within marriage, they have to wait, work and accept responsibility. Then they can marry. But that is too much of a ‘cross’ for many. They will bypass it and satisfy their sexual pleasures at will. They do not realise that such promiscuous behaviour will damage their consciences and future marriages.

Pornography is a counterfeit pleasure. It is absolutely a creation of the Devil. He substituted the fake for the real…What is pure pleasure in marriage has been corrupted in pornography

Pornography is truly a pleasure on demand. Married or unmarried, people don’t seem to think twice before they indulge in it. Some psychologists even prescribe pornography to bring the spark back in marriage. Pornography is a counterfeit pleasure. It is absolutely a creation of the Devil. He substituted the fake for the real.

Men and women seek this destructive pleasure whenever, wherever and however. It is available on demand at the click of a button. What is pure pleasure in marriage has been corrupted in pornography. Many minds and marriages are destroyed because of addiction to pornography. People lost their marriages and jobs. All because they succumbed to the lie of Satan that they can have this pleasure on demand. NOW.

Many minds and marriages are destroyed because of addiction to pornography. People lost their marriages and jobs. All because they succumbed to the lie of Satan that they can have this pleasure on demand. NOW.

Smoking weed and drinking alcohol have become common among high school students. Beyond curiosity, they seek it for pleasure. Both boys and girls do it. Once they start it they become addicted to it. They begin to demand it. They can’t do without it.

Others may not be seeking pleasures of money, sex and drugs but their pleasures are equally deceptive and sometimes destructive. Every day we are bombarded with advertisements of branded clothes and accessories, smart phones and gadgets of every kind. Some of them we may need but most of them we definitely don’t need.

Irresistible offers on exotic holidays, enticing foods and drinks pop up on your phones, laptops and Tablets beckoning you to enjoy them urgently! Bigger cars and glittering jewellery are screaming in your mind to be possessed. There is every form of convenience provided in the form of a credit card and a payment scheme without a down payment which they claim is at 0% interest. You don’t have to earn to spend, at least so they say. They don’t want you to wait, save and spend; they want you to spend NOW. It is a trap. Don’t fall into it.

You don’t have to earn to spend, at least so they say. They don’t want you to wait, save and spend; they want you to spend NOW. It is a trap. Don’t fall into it.

There are pleasures like pre-marital sex, extra-marital sex, pornography and drugs that are surely forbidden. But all other creature comforts and simple pleasures that come as a blessing of loving God and loving our family can surely be enjoyed. However, even while we seek those material comforts and possessions let us consider a principle to keep us in check. I call it the principle of postponed pleasure.

Simply stated, let us learn to postpone the fulfilment of all our material desires. It is natural to desire the latest phone that has come into the market. When the desire rises in your heart, you feel like fulfilling it immediately. NOW. But tell yourself, “I will not buy it now but I will wait. I will postpone the pleasure of fulfilling it.” When you wait the desire will lose its hold on your heart. You will no longer feel compelled to buy it. While you are waiting, you can also do a need analysis and a cost-benefit analysis. You will realise that you really don’t need it or that you cannot really afford it. Or sometimes the product turns out to have defects and are better off not buying it.

The principle of postponed pleasure is an antidote to the poison of instant gratification, seeking pleasure on demand. When you postpone your pleasure, you develop patience, exercise wisdom and learn the meaning of enjoying every God-given pleasures within God-prescribed boundaries.

Youngsters can also apply this principle in their relationships with friends. They can resolve to ‘postpone their pleasure of a sexual relationship’ to when they get married. They can overcome their temptations and enjoy friendships within godly boundaries.

The principle of postponed pleasure is an antidote to the poison of instant gratification, seeking pleasure on demand. When you postpone your pleasure, you develop patience, exercise wisdom and learn the meaning of enjoying every God-given pleasures within God-prescribed boundaries. There is joy in such pleasures. Those who indulge in pleasures on demand may enjoy the thrill of the dive in the oceans of pleasure but they are sure to come up with gravel in their mouth.

Let us resolve this New Year to practice the principle of postponed pleasure.

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