What causes quarrels and what causes fights among you? Is it not this, that your passions are at war within you? You desire and do not have, so you murder. You covet and cannot obtain, so you fight and quarrel. You do not have, because you do not ask. You ask and do not receive, because you ask wrongly, to spend it on your passions. (James 4:1-3 ESV)
James points us to see the reasons for our discontent and how it leads to fights and worse. We desire and covet things of the earth to satisfy the longing that only God can satisfy. God desires to give us good things but often we fail to ask, or when we do we ask for the wrong reasons. We ask so that these idolatrous passions are satisfied. We use God to get something else to fill the place in our heart that belongs to God. Thank God he doesn’t give us what we want in those cases!
The answer to this dilemma is to humble yourself before God; to say, God help! God gives more grace. When we draw near to God he draws near to us and in so doing gives us desires that will quiet our discontent.
When you quarrel and/or fight, what causes it?
Humble yourself before God and confess your need.
McCheyne’s reading plan: 1 Ch 17, Ja 4, Jonah 1, Ps 96