“Do not love this world nor the things it offers you, for when you love the world, you do not have the love of the Father in you. For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world. And this world is fading away, along with everything that people crave. But anyone who does what pleases God will live forever”.
1 John 1:15–17
“The Real Thing”
That slogan for Coca-Cola has been well known for decades, hasn’t it?- Even by people who don’t drink it!
Whether you like fizzy drinks or not, one has to admit that whoever came up with the catchphrase was a very clever marketing strategist.
In truth though, there’s only One “real thing”; Only One who brings true satisfaction, hope, joy and peace; and that is Jesus . Psalm 107:9
“For he satisfies the thirsty and fills the hungry with good things.”
By Contrast, John tells us in 1 John what this world has to offer us:
”Craving” – when we feel empty or lonely or unloved, it’s tempting to think we can fill our emptiness with temporary physical pleasures, such as food, tv, sports, drink, clothing, shoes etc. But the things we consume eventually consume us. What starts out as a small thing, can become something we can’t get enough of. When watching the latest episode of that box set becomes more important to us than time alone with God, we have a problem.
“Lust”- Running after anything else that pulls us away from our true, first love – Jesus. When our eyes see that shiny thing that someone else has – It may be a promotion at work, a ministry in church, an annual holiday, or material things – and we start to believe that ‘if I could only have what they have, my life would become as shiny as theirs’. And we become so focused on that shiny thing, that it totally eclipses Jesus. Before we know it, we’re hooked – enticed to go to any lengths to get that shiny thing!
“Boasting” – We’ve all done it at times , and we’ve all seen others do it. We feel rejected, left out, ‘less than’ – so we feel the need to blow our own trumpet to ease our pain a little. Some do it in a room full of people, others on social media. On Social Media, the likes and complimentary comments seem to pour “healing balm” on the sting of rejection. But it’s a lie! Its a temporary fix. Like one of those fake creams that you buy over the Internet, that has all the right packaging of an expensive ointment but is a cheap copy.
Only God offers something REAL to heal our hearts and fill every emptiness we may feel and in him there is no lack:
“Is anyone thirsty? Come and drink— even if you have no money! Come, take your choice of wine or milk— it’s all free! Why spend your money on food that does not give you strength? Why pay for food that does you no good? Listen to me, and you will eat what is good. You will enjoy the finest food. “Come to me with your ears wide open. Listen, and you will find life.”
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