God tells us flat out in the book of Jeremiah that we will begin to look like the things we pursue. The things we exalt and make the goal of life move from being the thing we desire to possess, to the thing that possesses us. That makes such sense because the things that we love, that we chase after, and I’ll be so bold as to say lust after, control us.
This is what the Lord says:
“What fault did your ancestors find in me,
that they strayed so far from me?
They followed worthless idols
and became worthless themselves. . . . Jeremiah 2:5
Our pursuit shapes the way we use our time, where we invest our resources, and even our friend circle. Not one area of life goes unscathed or escapes the tentacles of our pursuit.
Do not run until your feet are bare
and your throat is dry.
But you said, ‘It’s no use!
I love foreign gods,
and I must go after them. . . . Jeremiah 2:25
Rolling all of this over in my mind and asking myself what I pursue with everything I am and praying in the back of my brain that my pursuit is of the Who and not a what, made me remember a Shel Silverstein poem I used to read to my Sweet Girl when she was little . . . Jimmy Jet and the TV Set.
I’ll tell you the story of Jimmy Jet–
And you know what I tell you is true.
He loved to watch his TV set
Almost as much as you.
He watched all day, he watched all night
Till he grew pale and lean,
From ‘The Early Show’ to ‘The Late Show’
And all the shows in between.
He watched till his eyes were frozen wide,
And his bottom grew into his chair.
And his chin turned into a tuning dial,
And antennae grew out of his hair.
And his brains turned into TV tubes,
And his face to a TV screen.
And two knobs saying ‘vert.’ and ‘horiz.’
Grew where his ears had been.
And he grew a plug that looked like a tail
So we plugged in little Jim.
And now instead of him watching TV
We all sit around and watch him.
Quite the cautionary tale! Full of wisdom if we’re willing to take it in. I can’t expect to be consumed with the temporal things of this world and not look like I belong here. Like this is my country and my home.
Sister, we will be changed by what we run after and where we fix our eyes. We will resemble what we pursue and our pursuit will shape who we become.