Humankind has sought meaning and purpose in many different things. Today people invest themselves in the pursuit of a successful career, of wealth, good relationships, sex, status, entertainment, only to find, sooner or later, that these things ultimately leave us feeling dissatisfied and empty.
Many people who have fulfilled their aims, goals, and dreams have testified to the fact that there is still a deep void inside - a feeling of emptiness that nothing seems to fill. This emptiness causes us to revisit these questions time and time again.
Jonny Wilkinson, generally regarded as one of Rugby Union's best ever players, fulfilled his greatest dream in 2003 when he drop-kicked England to victory in the Rugby World Cup. However, in an interview with The Times newspaper about that day, Wilkinson said:
"I [began] to feel the elation slipping away during the lap of honour around the field. I couldn't believe all that effort was losing its worth so soon... I'd just achieved my greatest ambition and it felt empty."
The Times, 21 Nov 2009.
This is not a modern problem - Solomon, king of Israel some 3,000 years ago had one of the grandest kingdoms the world has ever seen; incredible wealth, wisdom, hundreds of wives, grand palaces and gardens. The very best food and wine, and all the entertainment his heart desired.
Yet, in his book ‘Ecclesiastes’, Solomon laments that “everything is meaningless”, that everything the world offers can only ever bring temporary happiness and contentment. Without any true meaning or purpose they quickly became meaningless and empty.
In his book, King Solomon concludes that God has “set eternity in the human heart”, that God has created within us that sense of there being something more than just the physical world we experience with our senses. In fact, God created us first and foremost to have a relationship with himself - a real, dynamic, and transformational relationship. Jesus said that the first and greatest thing we can do in this life is love God with everything we have. Until we find this relationship we are left with that feeling that there is something missing.
In saying these things, Jesus was telling us that the fullest, most satisfying and meaningful life we can ever hope to live is found in following him, because it is through Jesus that our relationship with God, the Father, is restored. Jesus also tells us that through the things we have done wrong (sin) we have separated ourselves from God and rejected him. Yet through faith in Jesus, the greatest of all relationships can be restored, bringing us peace, forgiveness, grace, mercy, meaning, purpose, and above all, real, genuine, powerful, and perfect love.
Are you someone who, like Jonny Wilkinson or King Solomon, has found an emptiness to life? Do you have a sense that there is something more to life - something beyond what the world offers?
Then we would love you to get in touch and explore faith with us.
Discover the real, living, dynamic and holy Father God of love
We run the Alpha course regularly at Whetstone Baptist Church
The Alpha Course is a series of ten interactive sessions that freely explore the basics of the Christian faith.
Alpha sessions are:
There is no pressure, no charge, and no follow-up if you decide it's not for you. The Alpha Course is designed to encourage debate and explore the basics of the Christian faith in a friendly, honest and informal environment.
Contact Nick Swanson for details of the next Alpha course.