What Are You Chasing?


“For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight. In love, he predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ. In accordance with His pleasure and will – to the praise of His glorious grace, which He has freely given us in the One He loves.” Ephesians 1: 4-6 (NIV)

           We live in a fast-paced society. Everywhere we turn we see ads on Television, social media, and even on YouTube. With a lick of a mouse, we see a plethora of magazines with fashion, cars, high-end play toys, like speed boats or sailboats, and even videos of the “perfect life.”
           All of these wonderful things tantalize us with promise us a better image, presence, financial status, profession, or lifestyle. These images convince us our lives are dull and that we need whatever is being offered to make our lives better.
           Without knowing, our thinking is influenced by what we see and hear daily, and often, we find ourselves longing for something we think we need to make our lives better. We could, without realizing it, become so unhappy with our lives that we begin to chase after the thing we believe will make us happy, only to discover later on that all of those things, if we managed to attain any of them, still left you unsatisfied in your hearts; something was still missing.
           Does this sound familiar? Maybe you haven’t experienced it yet, and you think that would never happen to you, or maybe you know someone who has experienced this phenomenon.
           At any rate, more than likely, you will feel this emptiness, that unsatisfied feeling at some point in your life. It’s been called mid-life crisis, depression, dread, unhappiness, or fear. There comes a time when you know something is missing. Something is wrong in your life.
           When this feeling occurs, many people turn to alcohol, drugs, affairs, and a psychiatrist or psychologist to help them figure out their lives. All of those substitutes will cost you financially and possibly physically.
           But what if another answer was available, one that would put you on a path of fulfillment? I’m offering a better solution. Instead of chasing after material things, why not pick up a mirror and gaze at the person staring back at you. Take a hard look at the reflection, and know you are more than just that reflection. You have a heart and a soul that have hidden secrets, hurts, pains, traumas, trials, tribulations, and/or unforgiveness that only your inner life knows about, or perhaps you are aware of but refuse to examine, to deal with past hurts.
           However, these are the real culprits of your unhappiness that have caused you to do the things you do without realizing it. Those hidden hurts can cause you to mistreat others, to fail in relationships and even fail at set goals you have made. You may blame others for causing all those failures. The reality is that those other people you may blame are more than likely the catalysts, but they were not the true reason for unwanted outcomes in your life.
           Remember, you are free to choose what to do with your life. Wrong choices driven by those inner feelings caused the outcomes in most cases. For instance, you may have been extremely hurt or even traumatized by someone. While you survived, your soul was deeply wounded, and you have never forgiven the person who hurt you. I totally understand that because I have experienced that in the past.
           However, the good news is that you were never created to carry all those painful memories. If you are willing and ready to get real and honest with yourself, you can be set free of all of the suffering, pain, sorrow, unforgiveness, and traumas if you choose this better path. No denial; it will be painful to face, and it will take a lot of courage, but if you are sick and tired of being sick and tired, then freedom and peace lie ahead.
           As I stated, I experienced the very thing I described and at the age of 31-years, I came to the end of myself. I had nothing left. I lost everything (except my precious daughter). I was broken and broken-hearted, alone, terribly afraid, and full of remorse and even anger. I found myself crumbling on the floor, weeping and wrenching with pain, and all I did at that moment was cry out to the only One who could possibly help me save me, and that was Jesus.
           The moment I called on His name through my sobs and said, “Lord, help me. Save me, forgive me of my sins and come into my life. I need you. I can’t go on without you. Be my Savior and Lord,” a calm, an unexplainable peace flooded my soul. I knew that my plea had been heard by the only One who could save me. I was tired of running, tired of making bad decisions, making endless mistakes, and living a life that was full of bitterness, anger, unforgiveness and certainly empty without meaning or direction.
           I had been running from God for years, trying to fill that void in my heart with material things. But God had been chasing me and waiting for me to come to Him willingly. When I knew no other answer existed because I couldn’t fix myself or the predicament I was in, Jesus was present, ready to accept me as one of His and set my feet on a new path. God always keeps His promises; this truth is clear in His Word.
           The Bible states, “For the Son of Man [Jesus] came to seek and save the lost” Luke 19:10 (NIV Version) and again, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life” John 3:16 (NIV Version).
           The Bible is full of the promises of our Lord. You don’t have to do anything to be saved except ask Jesus to come into your life and forgive you. That’s it. This truth is stated clearly in The Bible in the Book of Ephesians: “For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, it is a gift of God – not by works so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do” Ephesians 2: 8-10 (NIV Version).
           This is the only solution for all your problems. I realize you might not be convinced yet, but what if I were telling you the truth? I will not say life will be easier without problems because that would not be the truth. The truth is that life is hard. Pain and suffering are part of life’s process.
           But you will never have to bear those things alone. Jesus will be with you, living in your heart, and He will walk through this life with you. Your burdens will not be yours anymore; they will be Jesus’ to carry for you and to see you through whatever you have to face.
           He promises to be with you. “Come to me, all who are weary and burdened, and I will give you a reset. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light” Matthew 11: 28-30 (NIV Version). Are you ready to choose a better path?
           If you are ready to take that step, just say this prayer with all your heart:
           “Heavenly Father, I believe Jesus is your only Son, sent to the earth to die on the cross, to go to a grave and rise again to give me eternal life. So, Jesus, I ask you to come into my heart, into my life, to be my Savior and Lord. I ask you to forgive me of all my sins so that I may be set free. Thank you, Jesus, for coming and saving me. In your precious, Holy Name. Amen.”
           This is one prayer your Heavenly Father will answer in the blink of an eye. He will never leave you nor forsake you, and you can be sure at that very moment, He will set your feet on a new path and lead you into the plan He designed just for you, full of meaning and life.
           My sincere prayer for you is that you have taken the best step in your life!

Gwen Wilkinson, thehopeauthor

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