This last week was a hard one. I witnessed close friends experiencing loss and multiple difficult life changes all at once. (Does anyone else feel like hard things often come to people in tidal waves?) Because of those events, I’ve been pondering the effect of change that removes things from your life. It’s so difficult to adjust to sometimes and can often create a sense of isolation and emptiness.
I had a conversation with my sister just yesterday about changes like these. There will be some in the not too distant future for us, I’m sure. Friends part ways, people drift out of your life, family members move away. I often complain that nothing is changing in my life, but imagining those kinds of changes left me feeling like an empty shell. At the end of what was a rather despairing conversation, my sis made the statement that my imagination was leaving God out of the future. The moment she said that, I recognized that I hadn’t mentioned God at all and how hopeless I felt without thinking of Him. Remembering Christ’s presence immediately consoled me. “Oh, yes, I almost forgot…God will be there.”
There’s a Bible verse you will have heard, I’m sure. It’s simply, “God is love.” There’s a pop song you might have heard called “Love, Save the Empty.” This is not me equating a Bible verse to a pop song, and the title is the only thing I’m drawing from, but it came to mind because of those empty feelings. What could save an empty person more than love? And, while the pop song is referring to romantic love, powerful, life-altering, fear-defying, self-sacrificing love in all its forms comes from one source, and that source is what will fill the loneliest, emptiest moments of our lives…God.
M. Night Shyamalan wrote a very simple line of dialogue for his movie, The Village, that speaks to this profound truth for all of us, whether you’re a Christian or not, “The world moves for love. It kneels before it in awe.”
There is no denying that in every story, every movie, every song, love is exalted as the best thing in life and the only thing worth giving your life for. I’ll say it again, “God is love.” And He is what calms my fear of the future and gives me certainty that I will never truly be empty. He is the one person who will satisfy the world’s desire for safety and fullness.
“…I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that according to the riches of his glory he may grant you to be strengthened with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith — that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may have strength to comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.” – Ephesians 3:14-19
Just like my sister reminded me in a depressing moment, if you are looking for something to fill you and give you satisfying peace, look to Christ. Whether you’re fearful of things to come or you’re experiencing loss and emptiness right at this moment, He is love and that’s what all of us really need.