Changing from a Temporary to an Eternal Perspective

Have you ever wanted something so badly you could hardly stand it, and then once you finally got it, you realized it wasn’t so special after all?

I remember shortly after I began my very first job at Blockbuster Video that I saw a Millennium Falcon statue in a Star Wars magazine. I wanted it badly, but it cost around $150.

Back in 1993, minimum wage was $4.25 an hour, so it took me two weeks and my entire paycheck to save up enough money to buy it. When the package finally came in the mail I excitedly tore open the box and pulled out a statue the size of my palm! What a rip off. That’s what happens when you ignore the phrase “not to scale” in the full page advertisement.

I remember thinking, I worked two whole weeks for this? I ended up sending it back for a refund.

Pursuing the Temporary

Solomon, who was the richest, wisest man of his time, experienced the same disappointment. He had pursued every pleasure and accomplishment, yet none of it satisfied. He wrote:

Then I looked on all the works that my hands had done and on the labor in which I had toiled; and indeed all was vanity and grasping for the wind. There was no profit under the sun.
— Ecclesiastes 2:11

Have you ever tried grasping for the wind? It’s an exercise in futility because it will leave you empty-handed every single time.

Solomon had done it all, seen it all, had it all and realized in the end that everything temporary that the world offers ultimately leads to disappointment. So is there anything available to us that won’t leave us feeling empty-handed?

Pursuing the Eternal

In striking contrast to what Solomon described, look at what the Apostle Paul had to say:

But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ. Yet indeed I also count all things loss for the excellence of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord, for whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them as rubbish, that I may gain Christ and be found in Him.
— Philippians 3:7-9

Paul had also experienced a thing or two in his life. As a Pharisee, he’d reached the pinnacle of success and prestige in the Jewish culture of the time—and he gave it all up. He even called it “rubbish.”

What happened to Paul? He had an encounter with Jesus on the road to Damascus and that gave him an eternal perspective!

You see, pursuing temporal pleasures will never fully satisfy us and can often leave us feeling like we just got ripped off. The world and what it offers will never be able to meet our expectations or fulfill our needs—never.

Jesus, on the other hand, will always satisfy us.

What are you seeking today that is leaving you disappointed and empty-handed? Trade in the temporal pursuits of this world for an eternal one instead—Jesus—and watch your disappointment fade to joy!

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