Finding Meaning And Purpose In Life

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If you enter most Christian bookshops, the most popular titles on the shelves are those offering one motivation or the other on how to succeed in life, find your purpose, gain financial independence, become the best of your self or live your best life now. These titles are popular because the human heart craves for meaning and purpose in life. Indeed, there is purpose and meaning for our existence. We are not on earth by a cosmic accident or chance. There is a reason for our existence. No life is without a purpose.

Succinctly, the Westminster Shorter Catechism summarises this purpose as “to glorify God and enjoy Him forever”. We were created by God and the only meaning we can find is in Him. St. Augustine, in his confessions said “You have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless, until they can find rest in you”.

Unfortunately, many pursue what they call meaning and purpose differently from “glorifying God and enjoying him forever”. They seek rest for their restless hearts in different places — places which can’t satisfy. On the contrary, believers finds their life in Christ.

Jesus, at a point in His ministry, lost some disciples because He had said things which the Bible says they found as “hard saying”(John 6:60). These hard sayings made them walk away. Truly, there are many who will not accept truth and will walk away. When they walked away, Jesus turned to the remaining and asked “Do you want to go away as well?” (John 6:67). Simon Peter, speaking for the twelve responded,

Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, and we have believed , and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God (John 6:68).

Every believer must come to this point of acknowledging the all sufficiency of Christ for our life. In the words, “Lord, to whom shall we go?” Peter proclaims the Lordship of Christ and His exclusivity to eternal life. Beside Christ, there is no life in anyone else (Acts 4:12). Christ is life. He is the origin and ‘sustainer’ of every life. “All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men” (John 1:3-4).

In Psalms 73:25, David declared words similar to Peter’s: “Whom have I in heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you”. This is a picture of a life which owes its existence and meaning to God. In praise, after God answered her prayer and she bore Samuel, Hannah similarly declared: “There is none holy like the LORD: for there is none besides [Him]; there is no rock like our God”(1Samuel 2:2)

To Peter and the other disciples, Christ was their sufficiency: “we have believed , and have come to know…” he said. What have they believed? That Christ is the Holy One of God. Most importantly, the believer must come to a point of faith and acknowledgement of the centrality of Christ to who they are — “The Holy One of God”; the only mediator between God and man; The one from whom we derive our existence and meaning!

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