In life there are many things we hope to find:
Some hope to find perspective. It’s something like what Coach John McKay of USC said to his team after they had been humiliated 51-0 by Notre Dame. McKay came into the locker room and saw a group of beaten worn-out and thoroughly depressed young football players who were not accustomed to losing. He stood up on a bench and said, “Men, let’s keep this in perspective. There are 800 million Chinese who don’t even know this game was played.” That’s what you call perspective. (Steve Farrar, “Family Survival in the American Jungle,” 1991, Multnomah Press, p. 40.).
Some hope to find happiness. An old man lived in the village. He was one of the most unfortunate people in the world. The whole village was tired of him, he was always gloomy, constantly complained and always was in a bad mood. The longer he lived, the more bile was emitted and the more poisonous were his words. People avoided him because his misfortune became contagious. It was even unnatural and insulting to be happy next to him. He created the feeling of unhappiness in others.
But one day, when he got to be eighty years old, an incredible thing happened. Instantly everyone heard the rumor: “The Old Man is happy today, he doesn’t complain about anything, smiles, and even his face is freshened up”. The whole village gathered. The old man was asked: What happened to you?
– Nothing special.. – he answered. – Eighty years I’ve been chasing happiness, and it was useless. And then… I decided to live without happiness and just enjoy life… That is why I am happy now! (inspirationalstories.eu)
Still others hope to find even greater things as they seek the kingdom of God. “In ’A Confession,’ Leo Tolstoy relates how the drive toward goodness that moved him as a boy was erased by his experiences in society. Later in life, after overwhelming success as a writer, he nevertheless sank into a psychological paralysis brought on by his vision of the futility of everything. The awareness that the passage of time alone would bring everything he loved and valued to nothing, left him completely hopeless. For years he lived in this condition, until he finally came to faith in a world of God where all that is good is preserved.
That is precisely the world of the spiritual that Jesus opened to humanity long ago and still opens to those who seek it. Observing the faith of simple peasants and the deeply meaningful (though painful) lives that flowed from it, Tolstoy was led onward to Jesus and his message of the kingdom of God.” (Dallas Willard, “The Divine Conspiracy: Rediscovering our Hidden Life in God.” HarperSanFrancisco, 1998. pg. 83.).
Every living being is hoping to find something. Inside each person is a longing for something greater, something that will answer the questions of their soul and answers that will satisfy the yearnings within them.
Because of sin, many look in the wrong places. To satisfy their unhappiness they might look for drugs or alcohol to suppress their sadness. To fulfill their desires, they might reach out for someone to fill those desires that will only lead them to greater darkness. To fulfill their passions, they might turn to unhealthy alternatives that lead them into dangerous places they never intended to go.
As Christians we know whom we must find to answer the questions of the soul, or, at least, we should. Even as we try to find our contentment in worldly things, God makes Himself available to us.
We find God in the Words He gave us to guide us to the truth. We find God in the relationships He has blessed us with in family and friends. We find God in worship as we, as a family, come together to learn and grow in our faith. We find God in His gift of nature. In the oceans we see His power, in the stars we see His awesomeness and in life we see His love.
Most of all we find God in His Son. Through His Son He shared all the attributes of holiness and goodness. In His Son He expressed His love both in His life and in His death. Finally, in His Son we find God in the hope of better things to come. “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life” (John 3:16).
God has made it possible to find Him. Study His Word, talk to Him in prayer and see Him in all that He has created. I’m convinced you’ll like what you find. Please pray with Me:
Heavenly Father, make it obvious to us where you are and help us to find you in every moment. Teach us to look for better things that can only be found in You. Amen.