A young man came for counselling. During the course of the conversation he was asked, "Where do you live?" With a shocked expression he retorted, "Live? I am not living, just existing!" True, there are many people who feel they just exist like other creatures of the world without really having any life in them. Although they are physically alive, there is a nagging dissatisfaction caused by a vacuum inside them. One of the reasons for that young man's boredom and dissatisfaction in life, I believe, has got to do with life's three basic problems - The fear about the future, the burdens of the present and finally the regrets about the past.
Let us look at each of these problems briefly. Once we are born in this world we shall have to face the future. We are living in an age which has the epigram, "press a button and you are not there." Thanks to science, we have all sorts of comforts today but what we do not understand is that science can never give us real satisfaction. It can give us the most sophisticated feather touch pillows but it cannot give the needed sleep. To have sound sleep one needs tranquility of mind and peace of heart.
When we think about the future, we are sure that there is a definite end for our lives on earth. In science exhibition lots of people lined up in front of a room which had a sign board, 'Come In and Know Your Future'. When the door opened people rushed in and went round and round only to see a human skeleton hanging in a corner!
Death is inevitable. When we think about our lives after death, are we really happy? The Bible says "Just as Man is destined to die once, and after that to face the judgment." (Hebrews 9:27)
We have to face the realities of life every day. Realities are often disappointments, failures, hurts, frustrations and their consequences with very rare success and joy. Frustration kills tolerance. When we cannot tolerate we feel it a burden.
When we look into the future there is fear, when we look at the present there are burdens and when we recollect the past there is guilt. Yes, guilty feelings about the things we have done in the past, the words we have spoken and the things we have failed to do. If guilt is not real what is the need for police stations, prisons, judicial courts, lunatic asylums, psychiatrists, preachers and counsellors? The constant pricking of our conscience robs us of our joy and peace.
Science, Politics, Education and Philosophy are not able to answer the basic questions of sin and its consequences. A sinking person's need is a Savior who can pull him out. No amount of philosophies, codes of ethics and religious rituals will help him in any way. The biblical revelation of God in Jesus Christ talks about this Savior. "For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost" Luke 19:10.
When one accepts Jesus Christ as their Savior He gives them, hope for the future("For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life" John 3:16), Rest in the Present ("Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you Rest" Matthew 11:28) , and finally forgiveness for the past ("If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness" 1 John 1:9).
Let me exhort you that our search for the real meaning of life will come to an end, and new life will begin if we sincerely invite Christ into our life to be our Savior and friend. God bless you, He loves each of us dearly.