Meaningless for a Reason
Life in this world is meaningless, but it’s meaningless for a reason.
There seems to be a natural instinct and an American cultural bent that leads us to spend our time pursuing every glimmer of happiness. We follow paths when they appear neatly void of heartache potential, and we have a knack for elevating our feelings.
Especially the feeling of fulfillment.
The relationship that’s good but isn’t good enough. The city that doesn’t feel quite like home. The time that got away. The car that rarely breaks down but whirrs when it idles (unlike the new ones). The one thing we can’t seem to put our finger on that must be the problem. The sigh of accepting hopelessness.
My friends, please listen and hear this: the inability to find true and lasting fulfillment in this world is God’s strategic setup to lead us freely home.
The book of Ecclesiastes in the Bible is one detailed lament about the vanity of life. Life is pointless, useless, futile - all words that describe life as ultimately meaningless. But life is meaningless for a supremely good reason.
For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God. - Romans 8:20-21 NIV
The Bible in the book of Romans explains that creation - people and this world - have been subjected to a pointless existence in the hope that we would freely choose to look beyond circumstances and situations to see God. To see life. To see the way from anxiety to peace, from sorrow to hope, and from fear to authentic assurance that everything is going to be okay - and not just okay, but incomprehensibly good.
Have you ever really taken time to consider the evidence for Jesus Christ?
A real, tangible person who historically walked the earth and was crucified - dead - and then three days later was nowhere to be found?
Or how about the Bible? A book containing messages about a coming savior that were lived out by Jesus and yet were written down many, many years before he was even born?
For me, knowing there was a man who lived and died and (even potentially) rose from the dead is enough reason to look at this issue seriously. What’s more, is the idea that Jesus came and died a horrifyingly awful death out of love for the world.
I know what love is. It’s self-sacrificial. It’s patient. It doesn’t give up. It doesn’t end. Love would do anything for the good of another person. Yet love is not controlling. Love can be extended and offered and always present, but love has to be received freely to be experienced.
The Bible says that God is love. And the only way that Jesus’ death on a cross is love is if Jesus is God Himself.
I was in a cult that taught me all kinds of information about the Bible. Information so detailed and confusing at times that I had absolutely no ability to even open the book and see anything but a jumbled up mess of religious rules and a person called Jesus. A person I did not understand, I did not see relevant, and someone I dismissed many times in many ways.
I still don’t have all the answers, but I know that God taught me what love is so that I could know who Jesus is.
Jesus is God, and God is love.
And in case we don’t understand love from our human experiences, God outlined it clearly for us in the Bible (see the book of 1 Corinthians, chapter 13).
As we learn to live a life of love, we increasingly see the beauty of God. Our desire for fulfillment is God-given and the desires of our hearts are satisfied as we begin to receive God’s love and experience a relationship with Him through Jesus.
Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, because God is love. This is how God showed his love among us: He sent his one and only Son into the world that we might live through him. This is love: not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us. - 1 John 4:7-12 NIV