Behold, O ye my people, or my brethren, for I esteem you as such, I desire that ye should consider the cause which ye are called to consider—for ye are desirous to have a king. (Mosiah 29:5)
These words are in the context of Mosiah trying to get the people’s input on who should be the next king over the Nephites. In this verse, Mosiah begins his letter in which he will give his best reasons why it would not be good to have a king. The words of this verse suggest that it is important for us to think about the things we want and consider WHY we want them. When we consider WHY we want things, often we are confronted with our shoddy thinking or unrighteous motivations. Acknowledging that our motives are bad or our good reasons are lacking can help us relinquish unrighteous desires.
I went through a phase a few years after I was married when I really wanted a tiara. And I didn’t want a little toy one; I wanted a really fancy-nice one. I wanted to be the queen of our house and wear it around. I wasn’t going to wear it other places, just at home. I’m not sure why I wanted it, other than I wanted to look extra special to myself and my husband. If the tiara that I wanted had been inexpensive, my husband probably would have gotten it for me, but it wasn’t. (After all, those rhinestones cost money!) And as he asked me why I wanted it, I realized that my reasons weren’t really good enough, so eventually I relinquished all serious intention of getting one. Deep, deep down, I suppose my motive for getting a tiara was all about stroking my own pride and vanity.
I’ve wanted to be famous. I can’t remember when this was, but I know I wanted it at some point. And I don’t know why I wanted it. Maybe I thought fame would bring happiness or that fame was the same as being appreciated or worthwhile. Now I know that is rarely the case, and thank goodness I didn’t have to become famous to discover that.
I’ve wanted to be rich. I’ve wanted to start a business. I’ve wanted to be an inventor. And you what? I’ve wanted those things for all the wrong reasons.
Yes, it is good to consider the reasons why we want what we want.
Tell me about some not-so-worthy desires that you've learned to relinquish. How did you come to let them go?