Today’s readings are Isaiah 17-19, 1 Corinthians 1, and Psalm 62.
What makes you happy and puts a smile on your face? What excites you, and what do you look forward to? What gives you a rush of adrenaline? What are you striving for? Most of us can probably name a few things after these questions. Many of us would say our spouse and kids make us happy. We might say we strive for career success long term and short-term things like closing a deal or completion and implementation of a big project you’ve been working on bring us satisfaction. For me, I would also say Illini sports, the Chicago Cubs, and the Chicago Bears make me happy…when they are winning at least (which is not often enough)! Some might even say their home and vehicles.
Psalm 62 helps us take a step back and gives some perspective on what’s truly important in life.
62 For God alone my soul waits in silence;
from him comes my salvation.
2 He alone is my rock and my salvation,
my fortress; I shall not be greatly shaken.
A few verses later…
5 For God alone, O my soul, wait in silence,
for my hope is from him.
6 He only is my rock and my salvation,
my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
7 On God rests my salvation and my glory;
my mighty rock, my refuge is God.
These verses make it very clear that He alone should be our foundation and source of joy. This past Sunday at Eastview Christian Church we had a guest pastor named Mark Moore from Christ’s Church of the Valley in Arizona. He preached on John 10. Pastor Moore said, “Success does not bring fulfillment.” In the book of the Ecclesiastes, Solomon, the son of David who wrote this Psalm speaks much about how chasing worldly success and riches is vanity and like chasing wind. Maybe the foundation of that belief was laid out by his father because David says here in Psalm 62.
9 Those of low estate are but a breath;
those of high estate are a delusion;
in the balances they go up;
they are together lighter than a breath.
10 Put no trust in extortion;
set no vain hopes on robbery;
if riches increase, set not your heart on them.
God gives us many great things on Earth. But it’s important we view those things as ways to shine and reflect His light, but that we do not look to them to be the light. God gives us wonderful things so they can bring Him glory…not us or that object. Pastor Moore said, “You don’t have to give up your occupation, but you can give over your occupation to Him.” We can glorify him through what we do.
Pastor Moore also told the story of a recent non-believer who decided to follow Jesus. This gentleman said, “If someone gives up their life for me, I’m going to give over my life to them.” Jesus died for you and for me while we were still sinners (Romans 5:8). Now that we know this the question becomes…what will we do about it? Will we look for the reflections or the actual light source to bring us fulfillment? Will we look to glorify Him who can bring us a joy that is eternal or the things that are here today but could be gone tomorrow?
“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”