Many people are asking what the purpose of life is. Many cannot seem to find answers to it and commit suicide, etc. This happens among the old and young alike. A number of years ago, I became acquainted with an older man. He seemed to be a decent sort of gentleman, and he became one of my casual friends. He lived alone – his children had moved on to other parts of the country. And then one day I heard he had committed suicide! The family came and took care of his things as if they’d come home for a family reunion. “He was old enough to know his own mind,” they said.
People are driven by agendas. If my goal is to be a millionaire, it affects the decisions that I make. If popularity is my driving force, I’ll seek out friends through social media such as Facebook or through other social venues. If I make mistakes that threaten that agenda, it affects how I feel about myself.
In the social world, here in democratic United States, people often connect on political agendas. If my ideals are more in harmony with what a Democratic leader is touting, then I invest my energies into furthering a Democratic cause. If I am against abortion, I might choose to support the Republican cause. After all, furthering causes that more closely align with my beliefs should make the country a better place, not?
Now take this into the religious realm. There are many people who are very driven. They faithfully show up in church each Sunday. They call themselves Christians. They are active in evangelization programs such as music or humanitarian aid mission programs. They do all they can do to attract children and youth. Most make an effort to fit into their societies and actively do what they can to better their society. Then when the news is reporting national conflict, most would give serious consideration to whether this is a “just war” or not and support it accordingly.
How do the above examples strike you? I hope they raise some questions in your mind. I believe each one reflects a skewed set of core beliefs. The thought processes of my friend could not have been right. Behind his outer shell, there was something going on which he didn’t share with the world. He apparently was struggling with something that he didn’t care for that was outside of his control. It was a deadly thought process; it killed him!
So what is the underlying belief that drove my friend to suicide and so many Christians to a flurry of activity that I don’t always agree with? One thought process that comes through in both examples is that the world (and I) are what I make them! In other words, God needs my help to accomplish His desired end in the world! That is rather conceited! But that is what happens when one is not focused on God.
God tells us in His Word that:
“My kingdom is not of this world: if my kingdom were of this world, then would my servants fight…” (John 18:36).
“The eyes of the Lord are in every place, beholding the evil and the good” (Pro 15:3).
“The king’s heart is in the hand of the Lord, as the rivers of water: He turneth it whithersoever He will” (Pro 21:1).
“… for this cause have I raised thee (Pharaoh) up, for to shew in thee My power; and that My name may be declared throughout all the earth” (Ex 9:16).
“Casting all your care upon Him; for He careth for you” (1Pe 5:7).
“But we preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and unto the Greeks foolishness; But unto them which are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God, and the wisdom of God. Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men” (1Co 1:23-25).
These scriptures tell us that God’s first interest is His kingdom, not the earthly kingdoms. We need to see the happenings in our lives in that light. He goes on to tell us that He arranges happenings in all the earthly kingdoms to ultimately further His Kingdom. Even amongst all this, He cares for each of us as individuals. We would then have to conclude that God has things easily under His control. In the political realm, the Christian stays aloof from all political involvement because of the two kingdom concept. We are “in the world”, but not “of the world” which calls us to let the political decisions to those who are “in the world” just as an earthly ambassador is not politically involved in the country of his calling. A Christian is someone who has given his whole life to the lordship of Jesus Christ, and Christianity is living a life in the interests of the Kingdom of Heaven; it is not measured in programs or quantities of converts. A life lived for the Kingdom of Heaven will be foolishness to the world. I am a citizen in the Kingdom of Heaven and my interests will be there, not in earthly programs.
Will your principles hold the test of time? If times were to change and we were experiencing persecution, what would you need to change? Do you stand on something solid that the next generation will adopt as their own and follow? May God help us to that end.