Are you a storm chaser, aka “extreme weather adventurer”? Not many of us are. Although we love to see the footage others capture by pursuing tornadoes and hurricanes, very few of us, if any, have actually gotten in a car or van and high-tailed it toward an approaching storm. To be honest, I don’t know anyone that even has it on their bucket list.
So here’s another question: Are you a wind chaser? Unfortunately, I am. And I’m guessing that many of you are too.
What’s a wind chaser? Someone who chases after the wind. Yes, I know you got that. What it means is someone who chases after everything the world has to offer.
I can chase the wind with the best of them.
Money. Career. Travel. Toys, and lots of them. Beautiful homes. Fast cars. Lavish parties. Expensive wine. Sparkling jewelry. Fabulous shoes. Cutting edge investments. The perfect family. A well-proportioned and youthful body. Prestige. Power. Control. Everything that dreams are made of, and many things that aren’t. Can you feel the wind blowing? A fresh breeze of excitement and allure beckoning us to come closer and take a look. Don’t be afraid to pick it up. Try it on for size. Smell its distinctive aroma. Feel the glamour. Surely all of our problems are solved with this. Certainly the loneliness and lack of purpose will go away as soon as we get… What?
It’s as empty as the wind. All of it.
Wind is elusive. We can see its path. We can feel its power. But we can’t quite grab onto it. It keeps moving. And just when we think we have it in our sights, we realize it’s now somewhere else. The ever-changing flow of desire. The ever-moving target of happiness and fulfillment.
One of the richest and wisest men that ever lived knew all about chasing after the wind. His name was Solomon. He was King David’s beloved son and the man chosen by God to rule His people. Early in his life, God appeared to Solomon in a dream and said, “Ask for whatever you want Me to give you.” (1 Kings 3:5) How’s that for carte blanche! I can think of a lot of things I’d ask for if I was the hip new ruler of a powerful nation. Especially to keep the legacy going of a warrior dad like David. Powerful armies to subdue enemies. Peace and protection. A few homes around the kingdom would be nice too. I’d have a list going in no time. But unlike me, Solomon asked God for one thing: Wisdom to rule His people. And because of this selfless request, God granted Solomon wisdom and riches beyond what any king or kingdom has ever seen. He literally had it all.
And it changed him.
As Solomon’s fame and stature grew, he stopped pursuing God and instead starting chasing after the wind. Solomon chronicled everything he did in the Book of Ecclesiastes. Building homes and wineries, gardens and parks, reservoirs and water groves. Amassing extreme wealth and harems of the world’s most beautiful women. Studying scientific theories to understand the mysteries of life. Following his hundreds of wives to worship other gods and other religions. Throwing parties for the world’s elite and trying to cheer himself up with laughter and camaraderie. In his own words, “I denied myself nothing my eyes desired; I refused my heart no pleasure. My heart took delight in all my work, and this was the reward for all my labor.” (Ecclesiastes 2:10)
In other words, Solomon gave himself everything. He was the ultimate wind chaser. And he came up empty.
Solomon began his adult life with God’s blessing. But then he became a wind chaser, and he lost all sense of meaning and purpose for his life. He pursued one thing after another after another. And in the end, he had everything he could ever imagine and then some.
Except he no longer had God.
Let’s not follow in Solomon’s footsteps. No matter what kind of wind we’re chasing, we will always come up empty. We won’t find the answer to life’s mysteries by chasing after the wind.
Meaning and purpose in life are only found when we pursue Jesus.
“Yet when I surveyed all that my hands had done and what I had toiled to achieve, everything was meaningless, a chasing after the wind; nothing was gained under the sun.” Ecclesiastes 2:11
May I pray?
Jesus, You alone are worthy of all power and praise. You alone are worthy of our pursuit. But Lord, sometimes we don’t even realize we’re chasing after the wind. It’s what everyone does. It’s what we’ve always done, and our parents before us. Help us today to break the cycle. Show us how we’re chasing emptiness, and help us to turn our time and attention to You. Fill us with purpose like nothing else can. Not because of what we can do for You, but because of who we are in You. Your beloved. Amen.
Q4U: What can you do today to stop chasing after the wind and start pursuing Jesus?