Where there is no vision from God, the people run wild,
but those who adhere to God’s instruction know genuine happiness.
Proverbs 29:18 (VOICE)
While meditating on this verse yesterday, I was reminded of bubbles. Like this picture from my girl's birthday party a couple of years back, little children love to blow bubbles, chase after them and try to catch or pop them. I think the fun of it comes mainly from how shimmery and colourfully attractive the bubbles are, making them even more desirable to young children.
But they'll learn soon enough that once the bubbles pop, there's nothing left. Maybe that's why older children and adults find this game of chasing bubbles meaningless and are usually not interested in it.
Sadly many grown adults still haven't figured out that they have actually been running around wildly, chasing after bubbles all their lives. These shiny, beautiful 'bubbles' could be anything from health or wealth, to beauty or popularity, to qualifications or power. In fact any worldly achievements could qualify, as long as they are not from God but from our selfish desires. In the end, we will find that 'all of them are meaningless, a chasing after the wind' (Ecclesiastes 1:14b.)
However, when we have a vision from God, then all our efforts in pursuing and fulfilling it will not be wasted. Like Martin Luther King, whose dream was to see a time where 'justice rolls down like waters and righteousness like a mighty stream,' giving everything he had to achieve this God-given mandate was worth it, even to the extent of sacrificing his life. Ultimately, the best example we can have is Jesus who 'for the joy that was set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God' (Hebrews 12:2b.) Even if we do not see the fruits of our labour in our lifetime as we pursue God's vision for us, know that in the end He will reward us for our obedience. Only then will we see clearly whether we have been catching mere air or real gold.
If anyone builds on this foundation using gold, silver, costly stones, wood, hay or straw, their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved – even though only as one escaping through the flames.
1 Corinthians 3:12-15