Pursue – I heard this word used in a sermon today. Later, I asked Siri for a definition, and she gave me two: following someone or something in order to catch them, and someone who continues or proceeds along a path or route. The second definition carries special significance for anyone who has run competitively. “Pursue” is the type of word that can fuel a manuscript.
The speaker highlighted some stories found in the Bible of individuals who pursued Jesus in spite of the obstacles they faced. “If I could just meet Jesus, then…”
One example highlighted the relentless pursuit of a woman who had been bleeding for twelve years (Mark 5:24-34). She was an outcast, shunned by everyone. The woman refused to be boxed in by her circumstances or give up hope. She fought through the crowd and touched Jesus’ robe. According to Jesus, it was her faith that healed her.
For the blind man, a refusal to be silenced by the crowd for repeatedly shouting out the name of Jesus, got him noticed (Mark 10:46-52). He didn’t let the crowd ridiculing him prevent him from pursuing Jesus. His relentless pursuit was rewarded by being healed.
The world is full of people pursuing something or someone. Will they be disappointed once they find it? Those who relentlessly pursue Jesus will not be disappointed. What is faith but the relentless pursuit of a man named Jesus.
Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life…” John 14:6
In my previous post I challenged others to let go of the familiarity they held with cherished possessions. To put them on hold for a season. Though this wisdom certainly applies to places and things it runs contrary to maintaining relationships with the people we cherish.
Take my wife for example. If I disassociate myself from her, this would not have a desirable outcome. The same would hold true of my relationship with my children, devoted friends, and God.
When I let go of my familiarity with possessions, it frees me to focus on relationships. It serves to elevate relationships over possessions. That brings me back to the season of Lent, and why so many people choose to do without favorite objects, and focus on their relationship with God and the suffering Jesus endured for all our sakes.
Don’t let familiarity with a relationship you hold dear breed contempt. Instead disassociate yourself from anything that stands in the way.
When I am tempted to yield to doubt during troubled times, I have to remind myself that God is enough. The moment I believe God is not enough, I need to ask myself, what is my “plan B.” God’s got me covered!
God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. (Psalm 46:1)