Tuesday, March 29, 2005

The Solution To Our Three Greatest Problems

(This was spoken on March 27, 2005. )

As you just saw on the video many people don’t realize the importance of Easter.

They think it just has to do with Easter bunnies, eggs and candy. I loved all those things when I was a kid and don’t have anything against them now.

But today the significance of what we celebrate today is so much more than that.

Easter is the day that we remember and celebrate the culmination of the greatest events in history.

It’s the final thing that God did to solve our 3 Greatest problems.

I’ve been watching my two sons Will and Jack recently and I’ve realized how so many times they don’t realize what they really need, how to fulfill their needs in the best way or even which are the most important needs.

When they’re hungry they know they have a need, but they don’t realize that eating only sweets or candy will make them sick.

A couple months ago Jack ran outside and he was only in his underwear. I guess he thought being outside was a more important need than being dressed!

They know they need to be safe, but they don’t really know when they’re in danger.

The other day Jack somehow got into his medicine and took some of it. I had to remind him Jack you don’t ever take this unless Mommy gives it to you! OK? And I moved into a new spot that’s even higher out of his reach.

Most of us adults are the same. A lot of times we don’t know what we really need or how to fulfill those needs, or which ones are our most important needs.

We have so many needs calling out to us in our minds, that most of the time the most important ones get drowned out my the others.

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Abraham Maslow theorized that we are motivated to satisfy 4 categories of needs. He called this a hierarchy of needs. He said you don’t focus on the need of one level until the needs below it are satisfied.

If you haven’t eaten in 24 hours, then your main motivation would be physiological. Once your physiological needs are met you’ve quieted those needs enough to focus on the next level where you’re still unfulfilled. You’ll want to do whatever you can to feel safe and secure. Once you feel these needs are basically met you then seek affection and a sense of belonging. As each step is fulfilled it doesn’t motivate you anymore.

Here are the needs Maslow listed from the first (lowest) needs to our last (highest): (Remember: The first need needs to be fulfilled - at least temporarily - before we pay attention to the next.)

Physiological Needs
Food, Water, Air, Rest, etc.

Safety Needs
Safety, Stability, Protection, freedom from fear and anxiety

Belonging Needs
Affectionate relationships, friends, a sweetheart, kids, and belonging

Esteem Needs
External: respect, fame, glory self-respect

Self – Actualization
Higher meaning in life - Philosophy & Religion

*The danger for us is that we could live our whole lives not realizing our real needs – never focusing on our most important needs. We live a really unsatisfying life.

In Leo Tolstoy’s “The Death of Ivan Illych” Ivan Illych says, "What if my whole life has been wrong?"

If we don’t come to realize what our greatest needs are, then the same that happened to Ivan Illych can happen to us.

I want you to imagine something with me…

You’re standing in the middle of a village.

As you look around you begin to notice how poor and run down a place it is. The houses and buildings are shacks made from random things.

You look closer at the people and they are dirty and dressed in rags. They all seem to be covered with scabs and to really be malnourished and sick. You watch them as they buy and trade different pieces of garbage that they’re treating like treasures.

The thought that’s running through your mind is how sad a place this is.

All of a sudden you hear a familiar voice behind you. You swing around to see who it is and you’re shocked by what you see.

There standing in a crowd behind you dressed in rags, dirty and covered with scabs is someone you recognize. It’s you!

You’re standing there clutching to a piece of garbage talking a group of friends in your same condition that you also recognize from work.

You’re standing there confused when all of a sudden your view of the whole scene changes. Your view scene begins rise above the crowd slowly and you see that this isn’t just a village your seeing but it’s a city, as your view raises higher and higher you realize it’s not just a city it’s a whole state, it’s the whole country it’s the whole world.

Your staring and realizing that the whole planet is in this condition when suddenly your view of the scene begins to lower again.

As you get closer and closer you notice that everything seems back to normal again. You’re finally back standing in that village again, but you now see that it’s just your neighborhood and everything is normal again.

At that moment you wake up and instantly sit up in your bed. It suddenly hits you and your realize what you’ve just seen.

You just saw the spiritual reality of the world.

You get up and try to go through your normal day, but everywhere you go and everyone you see reminds you of that poor, sad village you saw.

Today, I want to show you three of the greatest problems that we have. These are three of our biggest problems, because they each have a severe affect on us and there’s nothing we or person else can do to solve them.

After we look at these problems I want to show you how Easter is God’s solution to these three problems.

Hear the message below:

Real Audio
MP3 Stream

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