“I can’t get no satisfaction…”
I couldn’t remember the rest of the words to that Rolling Stones song when I started writing this post, and I wasn’t sure I wanted to. That song has always bothered me–musically, lyrically, and theologically. Or should I say it’s “left me dissatisfied”?
Practically everyone in the Western world strives for success and satisfaction. It’s human nature, and those two things seem to go hand-in-hand. People want to succeed–in their jobs and in their marriages. In athletics and in rearing successful children. In practically anything and everything.
And along with that often comes the quest for more money, more power, more recognition. More whatever.
And all to make them feel satisfied. To fill that empty spot inside that makes them feel important. To keep them from feeling like they’re no better than–no different from–everyone else.
At sixty-eight I’ve decided that being “no better than” others isn’t all that terrible. I’ve had my successes and I’ve had my failures, including some I still struggle with. Yet I’m satisfied overall.
I’m reminded of something I read in a Ted Decker book. One character claimed that he was God’s favorite person. Then he pointed out that the person he was talking to was God’s favorite, too. His point was that God loves everyone equally, no matter how good or bad they are, no matter how successful or unsuccessful–as the world views success.
Sure, I’d love for my books to sell millions of copies. Earning an appreciable amount of money from those sales would be nice. And how thrilled I’d be if some well-known musician discovered one of my songs and made it famous. But I’m satisfied without those things ever happening.
You see, my satisfaction isn’t based on success. If it were, I’d probably be the one singing, “I can’t get no satisfaction.”
My satisfaction doesn’t come from comparing myself with others, but with knowing how worthwhile I am in God’s sight. Yes, I want to please Him. I want Him to be proud of me. But He loves me all He can just because I’m me. Not because of the feeble best I can ever do. What more could I ask for?
I finally gave in to my curiosity, by the way. I put my seldom-played Rolling Stones CD in the stereo and listened to “Satisfaction.” The only words I could understand were the refrain. I’m satisfied that my dislike of that song is well founded.
What are your thoughts about success, satisfaction, and/or the Rolling Stones? Please leave a comment.
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“On Aging Gracelessly” is only one of my two blogs. I post lyrics of the Christian songs I’ve written over the last fifty years on “As I Come Singing.” Check it out HERE if you’re interested. Free lead sheets (tune, words, and chords) are available for many of them. View the list HERE.
My new novel, The Devil and Pastor Gus, is out now. If you’re interested, please check it out at Amazon.