Have you seen the movie “The Pursuit of Happyness?” The movie’s overview on Google states “Life is a struggle for single father Chris Gardner (Will Smith). Evicted from their apartment, he and young son (Jaden Christopher Syre Smith) find themselves alone with no place to go. Even though Chris eventually lands a job as an intern at a prestigious brokerage firm, the position pays no money. The pair must live in shelters and endure many hardships, but Chris refuses to give into despair as he struggles to create a better life for himself and his son.”
I have no doubt everyone wants to be happy and take whatever path that leads to it; sometimes without regard to cost. Our lives are not movies and some have experienced real hardships told in the mentioned movie. Will Smith as Chris Gardner was pursuing happyness that reminded me of a Facebook post written by Fatima, a sister-in-Christ, in Montgomery. Her post read, “So many choose success on earth above all but I choose the pursuit of eternal life in heaven at whatever cost.” (Matthew 6:33)
I immediately thought this would be a great blog because her words painted the perfect picture of me prior to my conversion to Christianity. Before becoming a Christian, my priorities were family and pursuing secular success. I ensured my work performance exceeded expectations outlined in my position descriptions. For my high wethical and moral standards, I received promotions and all types of accolades, commendations and awards throughout the years.
After working long hours and taking care of my family, I was exhausted. However, it did not stop me from studying long hours to get my college degree. Some nights I got a couple of hours of sleep before going to work the next day. Since my jobs for twenty-two years were on an Air Force Base, I felt secure enough to drive to the park, lock my car doors and sleep for 45 minutes on my lunch break. Oh, yea! My weight dropped to 99 pounds from stress, exhaustion and a daily diet of six Pepsi, a box of 10 Goody powders, and at night I had a pot of coffee. Despite these extreme circumstances, I prevailed and allowed nothing or anyone to stop me.
Sadly, I did not have the same tenacity to study the Bible as I did my college textbooks. It was only by God’s grace I lived to set my priorities in order to God, family, job and understanding secular success should not supersede spiritual success. “For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? Or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? (Mark 8:37)
Please do not misunderstand me, there is nothing wrong with secular success because God wants us to prosper. However, we should not allow it to stop us from the pursuit of eternal life. What greater reward is there than to be in the arms of God living in Heaven, a prepared place for prepared people?
The gift of eternal life comes to those who believe in Jesus Christ, who is Himself “The resurrection and the life.” (John 11:25)
“For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” (Romans 6:23).
“Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life.” John 3:36.
“But without faith it is impossible to please him; for he that cometh to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of them that diligently seek Him.” Hebrews 11:6