By Mike Colaw
When my son was younger there was a “Star Wars” Lego set he really wanted.
He had been saving his money, but still was about a dollar short. He begged us to help him get it, “Dad it’s only a dollar, come on, I know you have the money!”
My wife and I decided to make him wait. It was amazing how devastating this was for him. After the emotional meltdown, he gave it one last try, assuring us this was all he would ever want, and he’d never ask for anything again. Wow, there it was. I was one dollar away from fully satisfying my son, he would be complete for life if we gave in. My fully convinced son pleaded and pleaded with us. To his dismay, my wife and I held our ground, standing like a mountain between him and his deepest desire. A couple days later was allowance day, the Lego set was purchased with much haste and like every one before it, in just a few weeks it joined our huge bin of dismantled Lego pieces, a testimony of a desire met that didn’t even come close to fulfilling like my son thought it would.
In ministry, it is interesting how people will come to me devastated because they received what they wanted. Yep, you read that right: they are devastated because they got what they wanted. The devastation is actually quite interesting. They hurt because it didn’t work – the affair didn’t satisfy, the drug high ended, the new job lost its luster. Just a few years ago, a young man showed up in my office, deeply depressed. About a year before that he had left his wife for another woman. By his own admission it was fun… for a while.
That day, he sat in my office even more empty than before he left his wife.
“The loneliest moment in life is when that what you thought would deliver the ultimate has let you down.” – Ravi Zacharias
Ephesians 2:8-10 (ESV)
For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
Saved from what? Created to do what? Tucked away in this powerful verse is something so redeeming. Ultimate satisfaction comes from finding the purpose we were formed for since before time began. Emptiness is separation from this purpose. It doesn’t matter how wealthy we are, how long we live, or how much we have, if we are separated from a purpose that transcends time, we are left in want.