Seek & Find

It’s always a great pleasure to find things that we look for. One time, I lost my wedding ring for like 2years. When we found it, there was MUCH REJOICING!!
Be mindful of the things for which you seek.
If you’re looking for popularity, you’ll find it & probably be disappointed.
If you’re looking to be wealthy, you might discover that money isn’t everything you thought it would be.
If you’re looking for success, you might find that it’s nothing more than a cat-and-mouse chase.
If you’re looking for applause & affirmation, you might discover that it costs more than it’s worth
If you look for God’s kingdom more than anything else, then everything else will fall in your lap 🙂

Empty pursuits

When I was little, I was briefly mesmorized by cotton candy.  It looked so alluring, fluffy and it seemed to have an ethereal and tasty substance.  I remember the first time that I tried it – I was totally disappointed.  When the sugar rapidly evaporated as I put it in my mouth, I remember trying to find the substance of that big frothy and fluffy cotton ball  only to be disappointed by its disappearance and I thought, “What a rip off!”  It left a sweet taste in my mouth but no substance.

Anything we pursue that is not ultimately God will be like my cotton candy experience – tantalizing, alluring, fluffy and seemingly substantial, but ultimately empty, vacuous, disappointing, void and vain.  I like what CS Lewis said:  Aim at heaven and you will get earth thrown in.  Aim at earth and you will get neither.”  Let’s be mindful of our pursuits, watching how we spend our time, energy and money 🙂

 

chasing

I’ve been thinking lately about some things that I want – not cars, clothes or temporary stuff.  Sometimes I think we can get trapped in our desires for popularity, wealth & achievements.  If we aren’t careful, we can easily make this mistake:

  • popularity = importance
  • wealth = value
  • achievements = significance

Unfortunately, I think it’s easy to get focused on the wrong goals (popularity, wealth & achievements) and never really understand that we are already important, valuable & significant because of Jesus’ love for us.

You are valuable.  You are important.  You are significant.  All because Jesus loves you, full stop.

what’s the goal?

From time to time, I like to have people over for dinner & to make a nice meal.  My goal is to have some nice fellowship time, to relax and enjoy their company.  My goal isn’t to impress them with any cooking skill – if I was doing that, we’d probably need to take them to a nice restaurant.  I’m not trying to present a pristine house that is as well kept as a museum or mausoleum.  I’m also not trying to make my family seem like they’re people different than who they really are.  My goal is simply to have some great fellowship & hopefully the food won’t be a disastrous distraction 🙂

Sometimes in life, I have to be careful to think about my goals & I find that I ask myself some important questions from time to time:

  • what is my motivation?  Am I behaving based on an insecurity or a false perception?
  • what do I really want?  Image can sometimes be an elusive adventure into empty froth
  • what is God saying in the midst of all of this?  Am I pursuing the results of God’s presence or Their actual presence?

I like it in 2 Cor 5:9 where Paul says that he makes it his goal to please Christ – sounds like a noble & good goal to me 🙂

What do I really want?

When I think about the various things that I would like, it’s an interesting list. Somethings are just superficial & others have more substance & significance. But if I think with honesty about many of the things that I want & drill into what’s really in my heart, what I really want is fulfillment, significance, acceptance, purpose & contentment to name a few things. And with these things in mind, the ultimate source for these desires is a vibrant, growing & tranformational relationship with Jesus.
So lets be careful that we don’t fall into the “materialism trap” & remember that when we seek Jesus 1st & His kingdom, then everything else can fall into the proper alignment & priority 🙂

Investing Strategies

I had an interesting conversation with one of my kids about a decision they were making related to a short term pleasure. The problem we were discussing was in relation to pursuing an immediate desire at the expense of a long term payoff. I found that my conversation with my child possibly has had greater impact on me than them.
I think we all wrestle with the challenge of settling for short term pleasure rather than holding out for long term treasure. The immediate can be so alluring while the future can seem so distant. But what I love about Jesus is that He satisfies everything – both the long & short term desires that I have. So let’s go after Jesus & let Him work out the pleasure / treasure balance in our daily living 🙂