The Proof of Desire

Proverbs 21--21

The Verse of the Day for February 6, 2015 comes from Proverbs 21:21 (New Living Translation):

Whoever pursues righteousness and unfailing love will find life, righteousness, and honor.

Matthew 6:33 (NLT) echoes a similar exhortation to pursue righteousness:

Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.

These verses bring to mind comments that were made in a previous blog entry related to pursuing wisdom. The post is modified and re-posted below:

In reflecting on the Verse of the Day, an incident came to mind that occurred while I was in basic training, after having been drafted into the U.S. Army back in 1967. At the end of the training period, we were told to prepare for a thorough inspection of our barracks by the Inspector General. I recall that I had received my first pay which I had placed in the bottom of an empty stationery box that I had hidden underneath some of the clothing items that lined my footlocker. In my haste to prepare for the IG inspection, I inadvertently threw what I thought was an empty box into the trash which I later recalled having thrown into the dumpster behind the barracks. We passed the inspection with flying colors and our company performed well on the parade field, being selected as the group with the best formation. As a result we were given a pass to go into the neighboring town for the day.

As I went to get my pay which I had stashed away, I realized that I had thrown my month’s wages into the trash, as I remembered what I had done in preparing my footlocker for inspection. Without hesitation, I walked swiftly to the back of the barracks and climbed into the dumpster. In pursuing the object, I ignored the strange looks and snide comments and inquiries that asked “Johnson, what are you doing? What are you looking for?” I walked over to the area where I recall that I dumped the trash, and I diligently searched for and finally found the box that contained the money that I was looking for.

The Bible urges us to follow after or to pursue wisdom in the same manner that you would seek to find hidden treasures, such as silver or gold. In a similar manner, the object that I was seeking was more valuable to me than the embarrassment or inconvenience that I had to endure in order to obtain it. When I jumped into the dumpster without hesitation, I demonstrated that was I was seeking was valuable enough for me to put forth a serious effort to find. As mature followers of the Lord Jesus Christ, we demonstrate our desire for more of the life-sustaining Word of God, as we pursue “righteousness and unfailing love.” The following poem personalizes our yearning for more of God:

The Proof of Desire

Pursue love, and desire spiritual gifts,

but especially that you may prophesy.

I Corinthians 14:1

 

The proof of desire is pursuit.

Mike Murdock

 

In each new season may our lives abound with fruit,

As we follow after God and seek His favor,

To show that the proof of desire is pursuit.

 

This passion to please is our relentless pursuit,

As we seek to taste His goodness and to savor.

In each new season may our lives abound with fruit.

 

Seasoned trees are strengthened from the leaf to the root,

As we flow with fullness of joy while we I labor,

To show that the proof of desire is pursuit.

 

Though we may seek as silver His wisdom and truth,

This life swiftly passes, fleeting as a vapor.

In each new season may our lives abound with fruit.

 

Having yearned for God’s presence, even as a youth,

We now forsake all to scale the heights of Mount Tabor,

To show that the proof of desire is pursuit.

 

We ever seek to know God’s will and to do it,

To follow in the steps of Jesus, our Savior.

In each new season may our lives abound with fruit,

To show that the proof of desire is pursuit.

In reflecting upon the pursuit of spiritual matters, I thought of the lyrics of the Don Moen song “My Soul Follows Hard after Thee”

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