Autonomy and Satisfaction

‘The fear of the LORD leads to life, and he who has it will abide in satisfaction; he will not be visited with evil (Proverbs 19:23).’

Are we ever satisfied? Yes, in a lot of instances our desires, our wants, and our needs are satisfied.

Looking back over my life I praise the Lord, because many of my hopes and ambitions were fulfilled. In the autumn of my life I still have hopes and ambitions, and I look forward to times when they may be satisfied, but the greatest satisfaction will be in seeing my Lord in all of His glory when He comes again (Psalm 17:15; 1 John 3:2).


When I was a young man my greatest desire was to establish autonomy so that I could be self-sufficient for making my way in life. I wanted a steady job which would provide me with a reliable income. I also wanted to satisfy my insatiable lust for adventure. Even from a very young age I was always on the lookout for new and exciting adventures.

My aim wasn’t so much to gain satisfaction from fulfilling them, but in the doing of them. Success, of course, was an added bonus.

Some of my adventures required of me almost more than I could give, such as when sailing singlehanded a small boat in the North Sea from Grimsby and bound for West Mersea. Having been without proper sleep for two nights, I was utterly exhausted, and a gale from the southwest was imminent. The only haven of escape was Great Yarmouth, and by the time I arrived off the entrance, conditions were chaotic, but God was with me. The engine started, and with difficulty, on account of the currents and waves, I motored the yacht into the harbour. There the harbour master gave me a temporary berth alongside an old barge. Still dressed in my soggy oilskins, I thankfully lay on my bunk, and immediately fell asleep, and I didn’t wake until twelve hours later.

That morning the yacht was a complete shambles. On opening my eyes I saw a torn and very damp chart on the cabin floor, and I was startled to find that upon it there was a bloodstained, partial imprint of my right foot! There was more blood on the floor. It was then that I examined my foot and discovered a nasty gash on the big toe. As I cleaned and dressed it I remembered the stabbing pain I had experienced when striking my toe against the gear lever in the cockpit. In the frenzy of sailing, my shoe had fallen off. Then, after entering the cabin, I must have stepped on the chart which had dislodged itself from the chart table.

When I look back on that adventure, the doing of it brought me huge satisfaction, as did many of my *sailing adventures.

True Autonomy

It wasn’t until much later, and after loads more adventures, that I discovered God had been looking after me all the time. He kept me safe and brought me through them all. The autonomy I thought I had wasn’t the case; for in truth, I depended upon Him for everything. As time has progressed I’ve learnt that any autonomy I have is in His Son, and this comes with the responsibility of doing His will.

The Autonomous One is God Himself who satisfies all our needs (Matthew 6:32) and blesses us with His abundant love (1 Timothy 1:14). He gives us eternal life (1 John 5:11) and the sure **hope of a glorious inheritance in Him.

Our greatest and most satisfying adventure is yet to come when Jesus returns, and ‘we shall be changed (1 Corinthian 15:52).’

‘As for me, I will see Your face in righteousness; I shall be satisfied when I awake in Your likeness (Psalms 17:15).’

*Bill’s Log – Cruising Logs


**Our Hope

Other Related Texts

‘The poor shall eat and be satisfied; those who seek Him will praise the LORD. Let your heart live forever (Psalm 22:26).’

‘How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God! Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings. They are abundantly satisfied with the fullness of Your house, and You give them drink from the river of Your pleasures. For with You is the fountain of life; in Your light we see light (Psalm 36:7-9).’

‘Because Your loving kindness is better than life, my lips shall praise You. Thus I will bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name. My soul shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness, and my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips (Psalm 63:3-5).’

‘Blessed is the man You choose, and cause to approach You, that he may dwell in Your courts. We shall be satisfied with the goodness of Your house, of Your holy temple (Psalm 65:4).’

‘The fear of the LORD leads to life, and he who has it will abide in satisfaction; he will not be visited with evil (Proverbs 19:23).’

‘Hell and destruction are never full; so the eyes of man are never satisfied (Proverbs 27:20).’

‘All things are full of labour; man cannot express it. The eye is not satisfied with seeing, nor the ear filled with hearing (Ecclesiastes 1:8).’

‘There is one alone, without companion: He has neither son nor brother. Yet there is no end to all his labours, nor is his eye satisfied with riches. But he never asks, “For whom do I toil and deprive myself of good?” This also is vanity and a grave misfortune (Ecclesiastes 4:8).’

‘He who loves silver will not be satisfied with silver; nor he who loves abundance, with increase. This also is vanity (Ecclesiastes 5:10).’

‘All the labour of man is for his mouth, and yet his soul is not satisfied (Ecclesiastes 6:7).’

‘He shall see the labour of His soul, and be satisfied. By His knowledge My righteous Servant shall justify many, for He shall bear their iniquities (Isaiah 53:11).’

‘I will satiate the soul of the priests with abundance, and My people shall be satisfied with My goodness, says the LORD (Jeremiah 31:14).’

About thebiblicalway

I am a Christian by the grace of God. Ephesians 2:8, 9 Jesus loves me and I love Him. I love my wife, my family and my larger family, the true Church of God.
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