Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Obsession With Fame

"You don't have to be famous to be unforgettable."

I first heard this quote on a commercial encouraging men and women to consider teaching as a career.  It's stuck with me ever since.

In our culture so many people are obsessed with fame.  Everywhere we turn an individual is looking for his or her 15 minutes of fame.  And many will go to shameful lengths to attain them. 

People spend precious time, even hard earned money, in order to know all about the rich and famous.  They study them.  They strive to live, act, and think like them.

And why?
Because deep down, we all want to live a life that is unforgettable.

The point of the quote is to remind people that it isn't how many Twitter followers, Facebook friends, You-Tube views, or blog hits that measure the value of one's life.    

Rather it is about the sincerity of one's living.

A sincerity comprised of service to others rather than oneself.

A sincerity rooted in kindness.

A sincerity that finds true joy in being unforgettable to just one person.

A sincerity that hungers to be a blessing to others.

A sincerity that drives one to keep going even if no one else sees or acknowledges one's efforts.

Like the commercial pointed out, a good teacher's work is full of this kind of sincere living.  Hence the reason why each of us has at least one teacher who made a great impact upon our lives.  They might not be famous but, to us, they are absolutely unforgettable. 

And it isn't just a teacher's work that is unforgettable.  Every day millions of people are working hard and living with great sincerity.  And most of them aren't famous.  Even so, another person's life has been greatly impacted by their sincere living.

I recently took a trip to Cambodia and spent a few days at an orphanage there.  I'll never forget one woman who worked behind the scenes at the orphanage.  She helped serve the children meals, brushed and braided the girls' hair, and served as the "house mom."  She epitomized sincere living and her work everyday matters.  Truth be told there are very few people in this world who know her name.  Yet, to those orphan children she so faithfully serves and nurtures, she is unforgettable.

Our kids are growing up in a culture that puts way too much emphasis on fame.  Their generation
believes the lie that if you're popular, then you're somebody special.  And so again and again we see young people today doing whatever it takes to be noticed...popular...remembered.  And in this quest for fame, they've lost sight of sincere living.  In its place is a compromised state of living that is selfish, unkind, and greedy.

I don't know about you but I would rather my kids not get caught up in this hunger for fame game.  I so desperately want them to avoid the pitfalls associated with an obsession for popularity. 

The truth is, I have firsthand found tremendous peace and fulfillment in thirsting for God rather than fame or popularity.  Fame is temporary; popularity dries up quickly.  But God fills the soul with an abundance of hope and love.  And it is out of this abundance that He gives us the strength and grace to live a life that is sincere and thus, unforgettable.

So let's pray our kids thirst for Him rather than fame. Let's pray they find an abundant peace in Him.  And let's pray He gives them the strength to trust Him to direct them toward a path of sincere, unforgettable living.

"O God, you are my God, earnestly I seek you:  my soul thirsts for you, my body longs for you, in a dry and weary land where there is no water."  Psalm 63:1

Lord, may this be the cry of my kids' hearts!  May their souls long and thirst for You above fame.  When the dry and weary land of popularity leaves them parched, my they find an abundance of living water in You.

"Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times and in every way.  The Lord be with all of you."  2 Thessalonians 3:16

Lord, as my kids hunger after You may they be filled with Your peace at all times and in every way.

"Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight."  Proverbs 3:5-6

Lord, may they grow to trust You in all things...especially as they resist the temptation to be obsessed with fame.  In all that they do, may they acknowledge You.  And as they do, would you direct their paths toward sincere, unforgettable living that impacts others one person at a time.

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