For 6 years now we have had Lucy, our cocker spaniel. She was the cutest little thing as a puppy and had so much energy! As a 6 year old dog now, her energy level is about the same as it was when she was tiny! She has made us chuckle on many occasions especially when she chases her (rather non-existent) tail. Around and around she goes trying to grasp at something that isn’t even there. She doesn’t realize how silly she looks and that her efforts are in vain, but for those of us observing her it is quite humorous.
You know, we get a kick out of watching Lucy and thinking how silly she looks, but if I am honest, we all can often be like this crazy dog of ours. It can be so easy to chase after things that don’t really matter, or bring us the fulfillment we are seeking after, you know what I mean?
We can spend our days pining away after more of what the world tries to offer, or what we feel we need in order to fill that missing gap in our life, and we forget the deep treasure we have in Christ. A treasure that satisfies like no earthly treasure ever could.
As I dug into my Bible reading one morning these verses jumped out at me and I grabbed my pen to underline them.
1 Samuel 12:20b-22.”yet turn not aside from following the Lord, but serve the Lord with all your heart; And turn ye not aside: for then should ye go after vain things, which cannot profit nor deliver; for they are vain. For the Lord will not forsake his people for his great name’s sake: because it hath pleased the Lord to make you his people.”
This little nugget was tucked inside a speech that Samuel, who was now old, gave to the people of Israel. They were on the brink of getting their first ever king and Samuel had some counsel to give them before it happened.
Here are three little treasures with great impact that spoke to me the other morning.
First, isn’t it interesting that the Lord would have Samuel warn, “turn not aside from following the Lord”? God knows us, He knows how fickle our hearts can be and that our flesh would be tempted to turn away from Him at times. We probably all know of someone (or maybe even ourselves!) who has/have turned away from the Lord, especially when trials came. Were it not for grace, all of us would turn away. Christ beckons us to follow after Him, lets look at Psalm 27:8, “When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, Lord, will I seek.” We cannot pursue God and the world, it just isn’t possible. If we are not following after God, what are we following after?
That leads me to my second little truth, we would chase “after vain things, which cannot profit, nor deliver, for they are vain.” We all are chasing after something, but if what we are chasing after is not Christ, all we will find is emptiness. Why chase emptiness when fullness can be found? My dog chases something that is not really there, but still there she is going around and around chasing emptiness. That is exactly what we do when we chase after anything other than Christ. So how do we chase after Christ?
Our last little treasure, “serve the Lord with all your heart…..For the Lord will not forsake his people for his great name’s sake”. How do we even begin to chase after Christ? By digging into His Word! Speak daily with Him! Serve Him with all of our heart! The children in our home? We are serving Him by raising them to follow Him. The nursery children we care for on Sundays? We serve Him by serving them. Being a greeter at church, cleaning the church, meeting needs, serving in the community, helping others, we are serving Him by serving them! Chasing after God will lead to fullness like we have never known before! I am reminded of the verse in Luke 10:27, “And he answering said, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy strength, and with all thy mind; and thy neighbour as thyself.” When we are busy loving the Lord as described in this verse, turning away from Him will not even cross our minds!
This week, as we jump into our day, let’s purpose to chase after God! Let’s purpose to spend time with Him daily both through Scripture reading and prayer! Let’s focus on loving and serving Him with all that we are! Instead of chasing emptiness, let’s run after God, the One who fills our emptiness with His fullness!
ps: If you have been encouraged by this post, please feel free to pass it along!