Carl’s ears perked up as he looked in the direction of the object that caught his attention. He didn’t waiver his sights from the green turtle that was placed at the door of the house we were approaching.
While Carl’s focus was glued on the green piece of pottery, a brown rabbit with a fluffy white tail hopped only a couple of yards from where the little dog was walking. But because his attention was solely focused on the inanimate object, he totally missed what could have been a prized prey.
Once Carl drew closer to the fake turtle, the real rabbit had hopped away. And instead of being excited about reaching his goal, Carl’s ears began to droop and his body slumped down as he realized the reality of the situation.
Before thinking poorly of Carl, I know I need to look at my own heart and how many fake turtles I have pursued at the expense of letting the real thing hop by me. How often have I set my sights on worldly possessions with the belief that the things will satisfy me?
Mark 10:17-22 clearly addresses how anyone can miss out on being truly satisfied for the things that hold us hostage.
“And as Jesus was setting out on his journey, a man ran up and knelt before him and asked him, “Good Teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” And Jesus said to him, “Why do you call me good? No one is good except God alone. You know the commandments: ‘Do not murder, Do not commit adultery, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Do not defraud, Honor your father and mother.’” And he said to him, “Teacher, all these I have kept from my youth.” And Jesus, looking at him, loved him, and said to him, “You lack one thing: go, sell all that you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me.” Disheartened by the saying, he went away sorrowful, for he had great possessions.”
Jesus knew that this young man’s sights were glued to the things he owned and didn’t want to give them up for treasure in heaven. It states that Jesus loved him as he spoke truth to him. But because the man loved his possessions, he walked away disheartened.
How often have we heard of a famous person take their life? Not long ago, Oscar award winning actor Robin Williams took his life. The world was shocked to hear that this successful man who appeared to have arrived would commit suicide. Could he have possibly had his sights on the fake turtle?
Carl has moved on. He just raced down the stairs into the backyard to chase a squirrel up a tree. Once the rodent was halfway up, he and his sister began to wrestle for bragging rights. After a successful conquest, he has laid down on the floor and fallen asleep, only to dream about real turtles.