Once I saw someone walking her dog. It was a very hot day, one of those summer days that are quite unbearable. At a certain moment the dog saw water and started pulling on the leash to go to drink the water. The woman untied the leash and released the dog that ran to drink the water.
When the dog reached the water, he started drinking, however after every time that the dog drank a little bit of water he would look behind himself to see if his owner was coming, so that the whole time the dog was drinking water he was not all there, because his heart, eyes and desire were with his owner. When his owner passed by where the dog was drinking water, she did not stop but rather continued walking and the dog, without totally satisfying his thirst, stopped drinking and ran to the owner and continued walking with her.
Do we have the same behavior with God? While using the things of this world, where are our hearts, our eyes and our desires? This dog can give us a very helpful lesson: the things of the Lord should not make us forget the Lord of the things just as the dog did not forget his owner while he was drinking water.
We need material things and God created them to provide what we need in order to develop our lives in this world. However, material things are not the purpose of this life just as the water was not the purpose of the life of the dog. The dog needed the water as we need material things: we need to eat, to drink, to have a house, clothes, etc. but only as means to develop our earthly life, rather than as the goal of earthly life.
Earthly life has another purpose. If it didn’t, life would be an absurdity since this life cannot offer us what can satisfy our desires. Neither those who lack everything nor those who have everything are happy. If we cannot satisfy our desires during this life, why do we have them?
The purpose of this life is eternity where we will be able to satisfy our desires. This is why the dog gave us an important lesson: that we should use the things of this world insofar as we need them but always looking at eternity, without getting distracted about the purpose of this life. We should have our hearts, our eyes and our desires in heaven rather than in the things of this life if we do not want to lose God as the dog did not want to lose his owner.