So I have this problem—a problem of pointless pursuits. Pointless pursuits have kind of been the theme of my life, at least my life in the last few years. I haven’t pursued empty things because people failed to warn me about the consequences.
No, ignorance wasn’t the issue. My stubbornness was.
Friends, don’t let stubbornness cloud your judgment. Warnings are warnings for a reason. This post is my warning to you.
On Your Mark…
I pursued the perfect romance with Sean*. Of course, I pursued said romance completely in my mind—my covetous thoughts and my lustful daydreams. I wanted him so badly, and I wanted him to want me back. But I spent over five years believing this relationship would be perfect, and it never actually came into existence.
I pursued the perfect body. I just wanted to be skinny. Oh, skinny. I became so obsessed with that word that I starved myself to make it a reality. And I did make it a reality. But skinniness turned out to be a big, fat trap set by the devil.
I pursued the perfect job that didn’t exist. Writing was all I had ever wanted to do. Why did it seem impossible to get published? I spent my college breaks writing my book draft and my book proposal and finding literary agents to represent me. But I didn’t get the response I had been craving.
My heart kept breaking, but my feet kept running. I still wanted X, Y, and Z. So I kept chasing X, Y, and Z.
This can all be yours, the devil promised me. Trust me.
That’s what he told Jesus in the wilderness: “…if you worship me, it shall all be Yours” (Luke 4:7 NASB).
Satan didn’t care how tired I was, how weak I was, or how heartbroken I was. In fact, he preyed on those things. He knew I was desperate.
But Please Don’t Go
There’s another option besides ending up unsatisfied yet again. There are better things worth pursuing than romance, skinniness, and fame…or whatever you’re personally pursuing.
The way of the wicked is an abomination to the Lord, but He loves the one who pursues righteousness. (Proverbs 15:9 NASB)
One who pursues righteousness and loyalty finds life, righteousness, and honor. (Proverbs 21:21 NASB)
Now flee from youthful lusts and pursue righteousness, faith, love, and peace with those who call on the Lord from a pure heart. (2 Peter 2:22 NASB)
Pursuing righteousness sounds much more rewarding than pursuing anything worldly, doesn’t it? I have learned the hard way that wanting something—even if you want it really, really badly—doesn’t make that something right. Perseverance is admirable, but persevering an inappropriate thing at an inappropriate time is pointless.
Forcing relationships to form is exhausting. Forcing career paths to open up is exhausting. Forcing our bodies to undergo unhealthy change is exhausting.
Friends, don’t let Satan—or your own prideful stubbornness—get the best of you. Instead, pursue the best.
*Name has been changed.