All That Glitters is Not Gold

  

 

There are things that shimmer, that shine, and catch your eye from afar. They look like good things. They look like things worth chasing after, and chase we do. They glisten in the sun, full of mystery and intrigue. 

We chase them. We run after them. We think we've caught them, our grip slippery on this thing that is glittering and dazzling and seems so beautiful and good. We think these things we have our grimy hands on are things that will satisfy us and make us whole and happy.

These things are like those big gumballs you get at the grocery store for a quarter. They looked so good through that glass case. So bright, so colorful. They seemed like they would taste so delicious, we just had to have one. We put the money in, crank the handle, and it comes to us. It's in our hands, then it's in our mouth and we think it tastes so good, so sweet and full of sugary flavor. It's everything we wanted it to be. But then, only moments later, the flavor is gone. We are left with this huge wad of gum that isn't even chewable. It satisfied us just for a few seconds, but it didn't last. Once we had it, we realized it wasn't truly everything we wanted it to be.

We know what real sweetness can be. We've tasted the goodness of a sweet and plump strawberry, a tangy, fresh pineapple, a juicy peach picked straight from the tree. We know what sweet means. That gum ball wasn't it. For a second, it came close, but it was fake. It was a lame imitation of sweetness, a letdown. 

These things we chase after are all illusions. They shimmer in the light of all we hope they are. They shine in our eyes like flames do when we stare into a fire, mesmerized at this thing we want to be able to hold but know we can't. 

We run toward these things like crazed creatures so desperate for something to satiate our hunger, but they're empty. They're hollow. Whatever substance they have is fleeting. It's temporary. It's a vapor, a wisp of smoke quickly fading away into the expanse of air around us.

Why do we go toward the empty things when we know what can fill us to an overflow? Why do we run toward mirages when a path to a glorious paradise has been charted for us? Why do we think the shallow waters are enough for us to swim in? We know a deep, coursing river that will carry us on to glory, but we settle for weak water that just laps at our ankles.

I want to be the girl who dives in to the deep waters. I want to jump from the cliff of my fear and free fall into grace. I want to shatter the walls of my comfort zone and break through into boldness and bravery. I want to step forward confidently, living in the blessed assurance that Jesus is mine.

Rachel Dawson