Sunday, January 25, 2009

Looking for meaning

I'm reading this GREAT book! It's called "Birthright" by David Needham. Get it! Read it! Embrace it! :)! It's about our identity in Christ and who we are as Christians. So I'm going to share a little bit about it. Chapter two talks about how non-christians are always trying to find meaning in life, why they are here. We were created to know God, to have this rich, full, satisfying relationship with our creator. Thats what we were made for. But since Adam and Eve sinned, we could no longer have that relationship. Sin separated us from a perfect, holy God. This expression of the will to live and the will to discover meaning is found in what Paul calls "the deeds of the flesh".

"Now the works of the flesh are obvious: fornication, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, anger, quarrels, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these." Galatians 5:19-20

The first three deeds, fornication, impurity, and licentiousness, obviously relate to man's attempts to get at meaning through his body, his senses. Idolatry is very broad. An idolater is one who has made up his mind on where and how he will find life. And whatever it is, he will work feverishly to get it, guard it, sacrifice to it, and worship it. To lost it is to lose life. Sorcery focuses on the search for meaning in the occult. Enmities, strife, jealousy, and anger reflect the standard reactions of one who is frustrated with a given set of circumstances. Either some supposed meaning in life has been taken from him, threatened, or kept just beyond his reach. Quarrels, dissensions, and factions point to conflicting ideologies as to where life really is, where values are. Envy is clear enough. You and another person are nominated for senior class president or cheerleader.. and you lose. Your associates at work gets a promotion and raise and you don't. You got the smaller scoop of ice cream. Someone else has made it and you want it. I believe at moments like these, consciously or unconsciously, we feel threatened by whatever we thought made living significant. Meaning- even as lowly a meaning as "right this moment, life for me is a stomach full of ice cream, stimulated taste buds, a satisfied nose"- has been hurt. Some one else got the bigger scoop.
The final two deeds, drunkenness and carousing, reveal that we have given up.
We no longer have any desire to seek meaning. We've tried and tried to make some sense out of life. We're through trying. We want out.

Praise God that as christians, we have Jesus! We have meaning, we have purpose. None of that stuff even makes sense with Christ!

* I would also like to welcome April Meyer to the blogging world :)!

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