Abraham Maslow proposed that we all act based on a scale of our felt needs. At the bottom are physical needs like food, water, and air. When those are satisfied, we then crave safety, like health or financial security. Then we seek friendships, love, status, esteem, and recognition. Beyond these, we strive to be our best, even offering ourselves for the benefit of others. Some scholars say Maslow’s theory is not always accurate, yet it may help to explain why some people act as they do. Of course, God knows exactly how and why we act as we do-He created us. We find in Leviticus 26 that after setting the people free from Egyptian slavery, God promised them children, protection, material provisions, peace, and His presence-everything they needed to enjoy life. God promised all this IF-if they obeyed Him and kept their part of the covenant. Sadly, they failed to obey and never experienced all God promised them. Today, followers of Christ live under the new covenant. Under it, God still desires obedience. Only now He provides His Spirit to live within us. We can call upon Him to help us obey. And when we fail and we often do-we can admit our failure, ask God for strength, and try again.

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr.

Dr. Melvin E. Banks, Sr. is the founder and chairman of UMI (Urban Ministries, Inc.). Under his direction, UMI has grown to be a leading publisher of Christian education resources for churches in the African American community. Read More

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