"We always want what we can't have" is a saying we have all grown accustom to. We are on a constant pursuit of happiness because we choose to covet things instead of trusting God's new and everlasting covenant, Jesus...
The Pursuit of Power
"The LORD hardened the heart of Pharaoh king of Egypt, so that he pursued the Israelites, who were marching out boldly." Ex 14:8
In the book of Exodus, after Pharaoh releases the Israelites from slavery, he is quick to realise that he made a mistake and he makes it his mission to recapture the Israelites. Pharaoh sat on a throne, he exalted himself above anyone else, yet he needed the Israelites to serve him to feel superior, to feel important, to feel accepted and to feel appreciated. My question to you is, what are you pursuing to make you feel powerful? Whether it be a position of authority or people to empower you, we need to remember that all promotion and position of influence comes from God.
The Pursuit of People
"The Egyptians pursued them, all Pharaoh’s horses and chariots and his horsemen and his army, and overtook them encamped at the sea, by Pi-hahiroth, in front of Baal-zephon." Ex 14:9
Pharaoh and the Egyptians pursued after the Israelites, who were called God's people, and that's exactly it, they were God's people not their people. So how can we pursue after people if they don't even belong to us? Whether it be pursuing after the attention and love of new friends, old friends, a person you like, a lover, or even a family member, we have to realise that they belong to God and not to us.
"Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A cord of three strands is not quickly broken." Ecc 4:1
A three fold cord takes time to be woven together and once you find people who's mind, body and soul tie with yours, then you know God has blessed you with relationships that can endure anything.
The Pursuit of Promises
"Therefore, the people contended with Moses, and said, Give us water that we may drink. And Moses said to them, Why do you find fault with me? Why do you tempt the Lord and try His patience?" Ex 17:2
The Israelites were in constant pursuit of God's promises instead of being present in His presence. From pursuing after the Promised Land to pursuing after something as simple as water, they failed to trust and wait patiently on God. It's like rushing to open the biggest present under the Christmas tree, only to realise that the gift wasn't actually meant for you. If we rush ahead of God we will get what we want but it won't be what God wants for us!
"If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!" Matt 7:11
To put it plainly; God's promises are His promises not ours, and we shouldn't let our persistence compromise His promises, we need to wait on God to gift us in His perfect timing.
Learn to be Lead
"The Egyptians pursued them, and all Pharaoh's horses and chariots and horsemen followed them into the sea." Ex 14:23
God appeared to and instructed Moses to lead His people to the Promise Land before Moses even knew God. Moses led the Israelites across the Red Sea knowing that God would protect them, but the Egyptians pursued after the Israelites without any reassurance of their safety. God won't lead you, where He won't protect you. God is the lamp unto our feet, therefore we need to let Him light up our next steps before running ahead of Him!
God Pursues Us
How can we pursue what doesn't belong to us? If all belongs to God then we need to learn to surrender what we want most to the one who wants us most. When you pursue someone you often find yourself wanting to be around them all the time, taking an interest in their interests, becoming a bit obsessed...
We are God's object of obsession, He loves us so deeply that He pursues us even when we choose to pursue everything else other than Him. He wanted to be around us so much that He became flesh and walked the earth with us. He is so passionate about our purpose that His plans became our promises and His Son became our Saviour.