local family churchThe great preacher and scholar Fred Craddock once told about visiting one of his students after graduation. This former student was married and had young children in the house. Before dinner, Fred watched the kids roll around on the floor while playing with the family dog, a huge sleek greyhound. The father told him, “That’s a full-blooded greyhound there. He once raced professionally down in Florida. Then we got him. Great dog with the kids, that Greyhound.”

Later in the evening, after the parents excused themselves to put the children to bed, Fred sat in the living room alone with the dog. As he looked over at the dog, his imagination got the better of him, and he swears the dog turned to him and asked, “This your first visit to Connecticut?” Fred answered, “No, I went to school up here a long time ago.” “Well, I guess you heard. I came up here from Miami,” said the greyhound.
“Oh, yeah, you retired?” Fred asked. “No, is that what they told you?” replied the grey-hound. “No, no, I didn’t retire. I tell you, I spent 10 years as a professional racing grey-hound. That means 10 years of running around that track day after day, seven days a week, with others chasing that rabbit. Well, one day, I got up close; I got a good look at that rabbit. It was a fake! I had spent my whole life chasing a fake rabbit! Hey, I didn’t retire; I quit!”

Sometimes in life, we find ourselves chasing a rabbit, don’t we? We think that there is something out there is going to make our life happier, better, richer. Sometimes it is more money, a better job, a bigger house, a nicer car, a new location, or any other number of things. But the truth is even when attained, we find that the satisfaction is short lived, and it doesn’t ultimately fulfill. There is an old and wise saying, “Happiness is found in being grateful for what you have.”

The apostle Paul wrote, “I know what it is to have little, and I know what it is to have plenty. In any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of being well-fed and of going hungry, of having plenty and of being in need. II can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”

Let us pray: Loving God, help us let go of any anxiety we feel around needing something newer or more. Grant us a deep sense of peace with who we are and what we have right here, right now. We ask in Jesus’ name. Amen.