The Next Big Thing
When I was growing up, there was always a next big thing.
As a poor kid raised in Chicago’s Humboldt Park, I usually got the next big thing long after it had already peaked. By the time I got my first hand-me-down bicycle, skateboards were in. Couple years later when I finally got a skateboard, video games were all my friends talked about. On and on, from cassette players to car stereos, video cameras to VCRs, pet rocks to iPods, polo shirts to designer purses — there was always something that all the cool kids had while the rest of us lagged behind.
Without money to waste, because a box of Cap’n Crunch was a luxury in my neighborhood, I realized early on that there would always be a next big thing. It’s how advertisers, and all the product producers behind them, stay in business. Their job is to make people feel even more inadequate, insecure, uncertain, and needy than we do already. They focus our attention on what we don’t have rather than what we do.
More importantly, I also realized that next big things never deliver. Sure, they’re fun for a day or two, but I soon discovered that they couldn’t live up to the hype. They didn’t give me all they promised — popularity, excitement, fulfillment, security, happiness. The day after playing my first Atari video game, I was still the same lonely, struggling, hurting kid I had always been.
Next big things always promise more than they can deliver.
And they haven’t changed much since I was a kid. If anything, we’re now bombarded with more big things at once than we can handle. It doesn’t help that today’s new smart phone is outdated tomorrow, or that fashion tastes change faster than online headlines.
We have more brands, more varieties, more gadgets, more next big things than ever before. But none of them satisfy us.
Tying our happiness to the next big thing only leaves us knotted in frustration every time. We’re always chasing something that perpetually slips through our fingers, left holding our own longing and disappointment time after time.
When I was about thirteen, however, I finally discovered the only big thing that delivers. That’s when I found myself at a youth service convicted by the Spirit of God, aware of how much I needed Jesus in my life. That’s when I gave God my life and agreed to follow Him wherever He wanted to take me and to do whatever He called me to do.
My circumstances didn’t magically change overnight. In fact, nothing around me changed much at first. But something inside me shifted dramatically. The only big thing that really matters, my relationship with the Living God, was secure. He not only forgave me of my sins and wanted a personal relationship with me, but God also had a special purpose for my life. My Abba Father, my Creator, had designed me for more than I could ever imagine.
God had big things in store for me, events and opportunities and situations that still boggle my mind even now after they have come to pass. And now after decades of knowing Him, loving Him, and serving Him, the Lord still loves to surprise me. He still has more for me.
Just like the phenomenon of the next big thing, God always has more for us.
But there’s a crucial difference. When Jesus said,
I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full — John 10:10 NIV
He wasn’t making an empty promise. And He wasn’t just referring to the unbridled joy we’ll have with Him in Heaven. Day after day, Jesus offers us the abundance of trusting Him for all our needs right now, knowing we can rely on Him regardless of our emotions or the circumstances of our life. As God’s Word assures us,
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. — Hebrews 13:8 NIV
With God, there’s always more. Unlike the next big things offered by our culture, the fulfillment found in knowing God and stepping out in faith with him never disappoints. It may not be what you expect, but from my experience what God has for you and me is always better than anything we can attain on our own. He knows your heart and how He made you.
He gifts you with His presence, filling you with His Spirit and blessing you with His abundance.
You don’t have to settle for the emptiness of chasing after something that can never satisfy you. If something’s missing, if you’ve never found satisfaction in all the next big things, then it’s time to experience the fullness of knowing God in every area of your life. It’s time to feel the power of God’s Spirit leading you on a bold adventure.
It’s time, my friend, to move into more.
Original devotion written for Devotionals Daily by Choco De Jesus, author of Move Into More.
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Does the next big thing tease you, too? The newest iPhone, or clothing line, or car, or vacation, or pleasure… Does it call to you “You need me”? The reality is that God and what He has in store for us are the biggest big things we could ever hope for, beyond what we could ever ask for or imagine. HE is our fullest satisfaction! Come share your thoughts with us on our blog. We want to hear from you! ~ Devotionals Daily