It’s the one thing that keeps everything from being perfect …
Life is good. We have people that love us, food on the table, at least a half tank of gas in the car… but there’s one thing that eludes us. one thing that we haven’t achieved or attained … a job, house, child, relationship, etc. So many good things are going on in and around us, but that one thing stirs inside, making us feel frustrated, incomplete or slighted.
Why do we focus on that one thing more than any other thing? Do you do that, even secretly?
It’s been going on since Adam and Eve were in the garden. Like little kids, they wanted what they wanted. God said, “You can have everything you see, except …” And that was exactly what they focused on. The serpent tempted them with it, too, getting them to think God was holding out on them. Why on earth couldn’t they have what they wanted? he encouraged them to wonder. They had it all-or almost all … in the Garden of Eden … but they weren’t satisfied.
I’ve been studying the book of Esther for the past several weeks. Haman, the bad guy in the true story, had an enormous case of no-satisfaction. He was actually having a great life. He was second in command, a very close friend of the king, had great wealth and many sons. But, it just wasn’t enough. He wanted Mordecai, one old Jewish man, to bow down when he saw him. Just that one thing…would make every day perfect. But Mordecai wouldn’t. His legs were as stiff as his will. He wouldn’t bow to a man, let alone a tyrant like Haman. And it stuck in Haman’s craw…giving him great discomfort and indigestion.
He lamented to his wife and friends until they couldn’t take it anymore. Zeresh (a.k.a. Mrs. Haman) blurted out, “Just ask the king in the morning to hang him. Then go on to your banquet and enjoy yourself!” No kidding! That’s exactly what she said! Obviously she was mentally exhausted hearing him complain! Even worse, her suggestion delighted him!
Haman, blinded by his unfulfilled glory, thought it was a grand idea and set about putting the plan into motion. That very night, he had a 75 ft. gallows built to hang Mordecai on. He had focused on the one thing all day and all night long, and he was furious. He would march right over to the king and demand to get his way! He’d put an end to that stubborn old man who had deprived him of his deserved respect. The faster Haman walked to the palace, the madder he got. He deserved this. He was due this. No one was going to keep him from having what he wanted!
Haman was so obsessed with what he didn’t have that he didn’t or couldn’t appreciate what he did have. His obsession became hatred. His hatred made him a monster. It took his joy and eventually his life.
It sounds ridiculous: obsessing, focusing, complaining. But, have you ever done that? We get mad, sad, or bitter seeing everybody else enjoying their dreams, living the good live. Maybe it’s someone’s approval, acceptance or love, perhaps even fame or fortune. “It’s not fair!” we stomp in secret. Of course, we’re not going to hang someone from a 75 ft. gallows, like Haman built for Mordecai. That’s outrageous! But will we do something else stupid?
I don’t know about you, but I’ve worn Haman’s shoes a time or two. I obsessed over the one thing way too long not appreciating all the blessings I already had. Instead of me having the dream…the dream had me!
If God’s Word is true, and I know it is…then I know He has a plan for me (Jeremiah 29:11) and He knows what is best, even when I have no clue what’s going on. Proverbs 3:5-6 says: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.” Lean not on your own understanding means-Stop trying to figure it all out on your own!
Psalm 84:11: “For the Lord God is a sun and a shield…No good thing will He withhold from those who walk uprightly.” He knows what really is good for us.
These Bible verses remind me that I can’t go all “Haman” when I don’t get my way. I need to choose daily to trust God, realizing He can see the future while I cannot. He is God and I am not.
Recently I read something I think I will hold on to forever: “If God closes a door, stop beating on it.What is on the other side is
Not meant for you.” Stop beating on it and appreciate what we have!