You can’t always get what you want

Mick Jagger image courtesy of

Yesterday (today, actually since I’m writing this post for tomorrow) was my birthday. I woke up to find three birthday cards from three of the most important people in my life—my husband, my son and my daughter—sitting on the island in the kitchen. They surrounded a box with a gift from my husband. I knew what it was. He had asked what I wanted and I told him. You may think this sounds unimaginative, but he would rather get me something I want than pull his hair out trying to find the perfect gift only to find it wasn’t so perfect after all.

Giant-lipped, overrated rock star Mick Jagger sings, “You can’t always get what you want, but if you try sometimes, you just might find you get what you need.”

I’m a firm believer that you can get what you want AND what you need. I also believe what you want is diametrically opposed to what you need at times. But we want what we want, don’t we? So much so that we confuse what we want with what we need.

But let’s assume what we want is not in conflict with what we need. Why is it we don’t get what we want? I think there are several reasons, but probably the biggest reason is this:

We don’t ask.

Instead, we sulk around and expect others to know what we want, then we get angry and resentful because we think people should just know what we want. This is pretty ridiculous if you think about it. The only One who truly knows the desires of our heart is the One who created us.

My challenge for you today is to ask for what you want. But think long and hard before you ask–you just might get it. And sometimes that’s an entirely new can of worms, because very few things in life come without strings attached. If you’re the giver of what is asked, I challenge you to give freely, without strings attached, because a gift isn’t really a gift if its bound up with strings.

A very special thank you to all the wonderful birthday wishes. Y’all made me feel like a rock star, even if I was doing laundry and cleaning the kitchen (like a rockstar).

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