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Thursday, October 22, 2009

Reaching for Stars

And now for the guest post we've all been waiting for, coming from LeAnne Miller in Washington State. She's a Pastor's wife, mother of five and a music minister. She writes music and Bible studies in her spare time.

A couple of weeks ago I asked her to give us her unique take on certain issues the world, and the church, is facing today. So, without further ado, this is what she had to say:

I was reading an old English fable to my children recently, called “Touching the Stars.” It was a quaint little story with lovely illustrations. As with most fables and legends, it is a mixture of fairytale and fact; fact being most often figurative as opposed to literal.

As the story goes, a little girl is obsessed with the desire to hold a star in her hands. In the end, her determination drives her to reach her goal through the help of many unlikely new friends.

As I closed the book, I tried to tie in some Biblical truths to this piece of make-believe. I wanted my children to embrace that fact that determination is a good quality, and that having ambition and drive can take you far. But the more I thought about this misguided little star chaser, the more I wanted to teach my children the following things.
  • Sometimes the stars that we chase are not really what we thought them to be. This little angel of a child truly thought that twinkle of a star could be held in her hand. She had no idea that what she was reaching for was an optical illusion. A trick of the eye. A deception that would have her believe she could hold in her hand a thing that does not exist; at least in the manner that she has perceived it.
  • Often the “stars” we reach for are not what we thought they would be. What was attractive and shiny, in actuality ends up to be a flaming ball of gas, waiting to consume us. The heroine of our story had no idea what a star really was. She had no idea that the very thing she craved and desired, had the ability to ultimately destroy her.
  • At times, we spend so much time chasing unattainable stars, we miss out on the real gifts and blessings that are around us. The little dreamer in our story would eventually awake to find that perhaps, she had been dreaming. The author would then have us believe, as the young lass opened her hand, that there is a hint of stardust clinging to her palm; not unlike a carrot dangling in front of rabbit. Leading us farther and farther away from what is really important.
The fact is, that we all have a little stardust clinging to our palms. Please don’t get me wrong, I am not trying to quash the dreams of little girls everywhere, but I think that if we are to teach our daughters to be women of a Proverbs 31 caliber, we need to examine the desires of our heart.
  • Know what it is you want in life. But more importantly, know what God wants from our lives. “Study to show ourselves approved...” (2 Timothy 2:15).
  • Count the cost. What price I will have to pay to reach my goal? Is it worth sacrificing the gifts and eternal treasures that God has provided? “Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things” (Colossians 3:2 NIV).
  • Finally, wake up! Don’t let the enemy fill your mind with fool’s gold and stardust. All that glitters is not gold. Life is full of enticing opportunities for temporary happiness. But if these things are not a part of God’s ultimate plan for your life, they can lead us astray, and ultimately consume us.
So go ahead, dream! Reach for the stars. With God, nothing is impossible; no goal unattainable. There are many successful dreamers in our history. Our God is not stingy, withholding good things from His children (Romans 8:23, Matthew 7:11). He wants us to have good things. He wants our lives to be full. However, He has given us an important key. Seek Him first (Matthew 6:33). Dreams are wonderful. They give us hope for better things. Just always remember to delight yourself in the Lord, and He will place in you His desires (Psalms 37:4). Godly desires. These desires are the “stars” we need to reach for.


Rachel said...

Thank you for the advice, LeAnne. Might I add, this also is good for boys to hear.

Anonymous said...

Great message. We should follow God's plan for us because His ideas will always be better than our own--He says "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts" (Isaiah 55:9). He has spoken promises of real treasure to anyone who will follow Him, and the Lord's powerful words will not return to Him void! (Isaiah 55:10-13)