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The Meaning of Life

There is an old joke, told in many different forms, but all relate to someone asking for directions to a particular location and eventually being told by the local person, “But I wouldn’t start from here!” Most people are searching for the meaning of life, even if they haven’t vocalised it, or haven’t actually given it much thought. It just governs the way they live. Others, and there are more and more of them today, are actually seeking the meaning of life. The question is which way will get you there and which way won’t.

The way of the world is the way of pleasure and self actualisation. The focus is themselves, even if they wrap it up in an alphabet soup of words which don’t seem to mean anything. Many books have been written on this subject and no doubt many more will be. Dr Hugh Moorhead, a professor of philosophy, wrote to 250 of the best-known philosophers, scientists, intellectuals and writers in the world asking them for their belief in what is the meaning of life. He published a book containing their responses. The interesting thing was that they couldn’t agree, some even admitted they made up an answer, and a few of them even asked Dr Moorhead to tell them his answer.

Essentially, regardless of how we try and frame a response, our human desire is to make life as pleasurable for ourselves as possible. This isn’t anything new. It was there in the Garden of Eden when Adam and Eve chose to believe that God was holding out on them, and they were missing out on the best they could have and the best they could be. They were wrong then and the world is wrong today in making ourselves the focus of the meaning of life. So, to go back to the old joke I mentioned, “I wouldn’t start from here”.

Where then should we start from? We should start, not from internalisation or actualisation, but from revelation, the revelation of the One who truly knows the meaning of life. This is the One who created us and declared that ‘I have come that you might have life, and life in all its fullness’ (John 10:10b).

The One who gives us life is the only one who knows what the meaning of life is. It is knowing Him, not just with head knowledge, but heart knowledge. It is a relationship with our Creator God, made possible through His death on the cross. That relationship also brings us rest (Matthew 11:28). It brings us rest from striving to attain what we cannot gain in and of ourselves but can only receive from the giver of life. To know Him is to know what you were created for. To know Him gives life its fullest meaning.

Prayer: Dear God, I am coming to You now in grateful thanks for saving me and inviting me in to the fullness of life that only You can give. Forgive me for the many times I have tried to find the meaning of life in other ways when it is only You that can give it. I choose to put aside all my own efforts now and fully embrace You as the Lord of my life. Thank you. Amen.


 

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Scripture

It’s in Christ that we find out who we are and what we are living for. Long before we first heard of Christ and got our hopes up, he had his eye on us, had designs on us for glorious living, part of the overall purpose he is working out in everything and everyone.
Ephesians 1:11-12, The Message

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Today's Writer

Philip Asselin Philip is on the associate ministry and teaching teams with Glyndley Manor. He and his wife Gillian attended the second Healing Retreat at Glyndley Manor in 1992, and were greatly helped. They have two grown up children, one grandson, and a step-granddaughter in California, and a daughter and granddaughter in Eastbourne. His desire is to see people healed and set free to serve God.

Philip Asselin


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