Monday, February 26, 2007

Life will leave you thirsty

Wisdom is needed to live in life. Wisdom doesn't start with years lived, but with the Lord feared. The epi-centre of wisdom is Jesus. Not just someone with wisdom, he is God's Wisdom.

The Teacher, writing Ecclesiastes 1, shows us that life is vapour. It's his thesis in his book. It's the theme he keeps repeating back upon. The Teacher gathers a wealth of evidence, even in his prologue to show that life can't deliver... The first key lesson to derive from the book is to BE HONEST. We need to be honest that life can't fill us up. Life is like fast food, it can make you feel bloated for a few moments but nothing more. We'll waste our lives if we try quench our thirst by drinking 'life'.

That's not to say that life isn't full of amazing things. It is. There are great things to see in God's creation - sunsets and landscapes and people. And then there's all the great stuff that God enables people to make. The same applies to the ear. The world is full of amazing sounds, birdsong and symphonies and all our mp3s. But, the honest reality is that none of this stuff has the power to satisfy us entirely. They're all there to be enjoyed. It'd be demonic to overreact and abstain from things that can't fill us (1 Timothy 4:1-5). But face facts, they can't fill us anymore than rivers can fill the sea. And they're not meant to. That's God's plan. He designed the universe to be structured and repetitive.

The only final satisfaction comes from Jesus Christ. In this life we still don't get the fullness of Him. It's easy for a Christian to imagine that they can't live a wonderfully fullfilled life because they're a Christian but it doesn't work that way. Christians have to live with emptiness now. We don't want to admit that - we'd rather just believe that 'life is meaningless' is for those who aren't Christians. No chance. Even with Jesus life is often humdrum. Monotony. Repetition.

William Lane Craig says: ...people occupy their time and their thoughts with trivialities and distractions so as to avoid the despair, boredom, and anxiety that would inevitably result if those diversions were removed.

Life has despair, boredom and anxiety built into it and we ought to be honest about that. I think there are times in life when we have to change down gear, accepting that some of life will be trivia. That probably means I ought to warm to small talk... maybe it means a bit of TV isn't that bad an idea, but at the very least it'll be healthy to stop and watch the world go about it's repetitive business once in a while... taking in the moments of happiness life offers, however fleeting.

Life is vapour, don't waste it by imagining that you can quench your thirst on life. Live it, with honesty. If we think otherwise we'll be living a lie. We can seek to deceive ourselves but our lives with be mere fantasy. Wisdom invites us to live in the real world. To have our 'joy anchored in reality' (Barry Webb). The idealism of youth is no bad thing but without a dose of reality we'll end up cynical and sorely at disappointed or we'll live a delusion. We want life to be everything, but that is nothing more than the man delusion.
Life will leave you thirsty.

No comments:

Post a Comment