Friday, November 17, 2006

The Non-Trivial Pursuit

We chase after a lot of things in life, don’t we? Somehow, we humans seem to have a need for pursuit hard-wired into our genetic make-up. I pursued my wife. I got her phone number years ago, called her, and started the dating process. It must’ve worked, because we’ve been married for 8 ½ years now. I pursued the approval of peers in school. It was crucial to “fit in”, to know that I was accepted at all costs.

Now that I’m older, one thing I’ve written about recently is my health. I am pursuing better health. I am chasing after more strength. I am doing what I can to lose some much needed pounds from my midsection. This is a very necessary pursuit as I age my way through the 30’s, and one I need to stay focused on. That is one pursuit that is very easy to end.

But, these past few days have seen a different kind of pursuit. I’m not after this with this kind of zeal, but many are. It’s the pursuit of the Playstation 3. I have seen local news stories on TV all week about people literally camping out in front of Best Buy in tents to be the first in line to get their hands on one of these puppies. People are lined up at these electronics stores by the hundreds to get their hands on these and most stores will only get a few dozen in!

Now, I love video games. I am a child of the 80’s, and I grew up on Atari 2600 and the original Nintendo game system. I know Pitfall, River Raid, Super Mario and Donkey Kong. Even now, an Xbox sits in my entertainment center. And from what I’ve heard, this new system from Sony is absolutely amazing. But, is it worth camping all week in the rain for? Is it worth shelling out $600 for? I say wait a year and get it for half that. Not these brave, and may I say, crazy souls. I even heard today that one man was shot in the line for a machine at a Wal-mart because he refused to give up his cash (sad, and I pray for that man). Another was offered $3500 cash for his spot in line, and refused it! Yet again, I saw one on Ebay already. Want to hear the starting bid? Take your heart pills first. $25,000! Talk about a trivial pursuit! It’s not just a board game, friends.

People are creatures of pursuit, and we will pay dearly for it, whether that’s a game console or the thrill of free-falling at 5,000 feet. And, I believe that we as God’s creation were made this way by Him. He didn’t want to make a bunch of robots. He wanted people that would choose to love him. But that means we also have a million other choices besides God. Yes, I’m sure it pains God to know that people he created to love and enjoy Him forever ignore His goodness and chase after stuff that won’t last. But that is just how much He loves us. He loves us enough to let us choose to love Him.

I think of my own kids love for me. There are times I pick them up and hold them, demanding hug or a kiss, them in protest the whole time (Hey, the TV is more appealing them, you know!). Finally, out of frustration, they give me the hug and the kiss, and happily return to the tube, or the toy, or whatever. Then there’s the times that they seek me out, and climb in my lap, and give me hugs and kisses. The times they come just to tell me that they love me. You know, I’ll take the enforced hugs and “I love you’s”, but I rather have those that they freely give me. When they want to seek me out and tell me that they love me. Friend, if we feel that way about our kids, how much more does our heavenly Father about us?

This makes me think of one of my favorite verses: “…but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me.” Phil. 3:12b. I love this verse because of speaks of the only pursuit with eternal value and blessings. It speaks of our pursuit of God, of knowing him intimately. I’m not just talking about theological knowledge. I mean a real relationship with God Almighty. We need to get our drive for pursuit going the right way. This is what that drive is about.

I don’t want to trivialize every other thing we go after. I wouldn’t have a wife or family if I hadn’t pursued my wife. I wouldn’t have a house if I hadn’t pursued a home. I wouldn’t have a job if I didn’t pursue employment. But the most crucial chase one can engage in is the one most neglected. Friends, it’s time to chase down God.

By the way, did you know that he is on a pursuit himself? But, tune in next time for that one!

God bless!


PBM said...

At the Wal Marts I work in in my town, (there are 2, I cover both portrait studios), and the words out that we would have 10 games available Thursday night at midnight. Tuesday at 10 am, people started showing up and have LIVED in the Lay-A-Way department till the big release!! WITH THEIR KIDS!!!! CrAzZzY!!!

The scene was the same in both stores!

Darrell said...

What a sad and twisted world we live in! The day will not come where I shell out $600 for a game. Even if I were a wealthy man, that just is not happening. I just wrote about commitment on my blog this morning, and this is another example. I guarentee that there will be people who attend our churches that will fork over the $600 (or more) for this game, and those same people "MIGHT" put a five spot in the offering pan on Sunday. If they happened to attend every single week for a year (which is doubtful) they will have given $260 to the Lord in a year. Compare that to $600 for a game (not to mention other games they buy for it during the year) and we quickly and clearly see where their commitment lies. The question is, which is the best investment into our families?

I think we can see what is wrong with the church in America!