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I don't know the solution to the problem of illegal immigration but I want to make an observation. The flow of people out of Mexico is astonishing. Singly and in groups they cross. Mothers and fathers with children cross. Through rivers and deserts they cross. In tunnels and in trucks they cross. Sometimes they have paid lots of money to cross.

Always there are challenges to overcome but one fact is so obvious that it is not open to debate; the people crossing from Mexico to the United States want to be here very badly. They are willing to make great effort and take great risks to have what they desire. In a way we might say that they are the physical embodiment of Hebrews 11:14-16; clearly they desire a better country and if they wanted to go back they could.

There’s an awesome power in desire. When we want something, we are likely to do something in order to get it. Negatively we describe some desires as lust (Mat. 5:28). David and his son Amnon would both have tragic failures to lust (2 Sam. 11 & 13). Coveting is another word for this frightful force. Achan’s coveting led him to steal items that God declared were the sacred property of sacrifice (cherem - Josh. 7:11).

While some desire can be bad, it can also be a powerful force for good. Many parents have braved fearsome challenges because they desired to protect and provide for their children. Many spouses have endured terrible conditions and have worked sacrificially because they wanted to do good for those they loved. Jacob worked seven years before he was allowed to marry his beloved Rachel, “and they seemed only a few days to him because of the love he had for her,” (Gen. 29:20 NKJV). That is descriptive of great desire in good ways.

People who really want to make their marriage happier and more fulfilling usually can. Often the greatest barrier to success is a lack of desire. I once suggested to a woman that I thought her marriage could be saved if she apologized to her husband. She told me she didn’t want to fix things that badly.

No action begins until the desire is there. We sometimes use the adage “where there’s a will there’s a way.” This may not be universally true, but the opposite certainly is; where there is no will, there is no way. So, what do you desire?

- Tim Orbison


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