Monday, Jan 27, 2020. There are a lot of things to enjoy on this planet. What is it that is giving you joy and excitement? Some like skying, to get into the snow in the sunlight. When you go down the mountains, it can be a fascinating feeling, a challenge to your skills, and a lot of fun at the same time.
Some of us like to eat and to drink. And indeed, it is great to have access to a variety of food and drink, from Italian to Indian, Japanese, Chinese, Mexican and other kitchen. Do you like green tea, or coffee, or beer, or stronger drinks? The variety of fruits available today in standard supermarkets and more specialized shops everywhere on the planet is fantastic indeed.
What is it that lets you enjoy life?
Full Breadth and Depth …
What is giving your life breadth and depth? What is giving it the core, that makes it worth to live?
All of us have some talent, we are all gifted and can do something very well. To do it, usually gives us a lot of pleasure and satisfaction. Doing something well gives you joy. It is the thing itself, but also the perception. Some things are just useful and it is good to see that people enjoy it. There are other things which bring pleasure to people, for example when we perform a piece of music. That also can give a lot of pleasure.
There are many people on this planet, and we usually sympathize with some of them. It is good to find company of people with similar interests, which enjoy the same things you enjoy. It is good to find friends and colleagues who are supportive and love to work constructively with you.
It is good to enjoy good things in life. All what is God has given to us, to use it and to enjoy it. The bible calls us to enjoy this creation! But it also calls us to think beyond the mere strive for pleasure. It calls us to even think beyond mere human friendship and love.
Love in the Center …
What is in the center of life? What is it that can be a strong joy to us, which is deep and sustainable and will never end? It is love itself. Love is the core of all what is, it is the core of this creation, it is the core of God himself!
In his famous letter to the Korinthians, the apostle Paul writes about the central role of love for us:
If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2 And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. 3 If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned, but have not love, I gain nothing. (1 Kor 13, 1-3)
The background of these verses can be found in the character and consistence of God himself. God is called love. He is love himself, since he is community himself. It is the community of father, son and holy spirit. And this community is characterized by complete trust, complete truth, complete purity.
Life needs to be filled by love, which comes from the creator. Only he is eternal, and only with him and in him we gain the perspective, we are made for: eternal love and friendship. Any action, which is not driven by love, cannot be sustained. Any relationship, which is not filled with love, cannot be completely good. The biblical idea is to transform our life to something which has love in each of its components, since it has God in it everywhere and all the time.
God is fine with our joy about various pleasures in this world. The bible does not object good things, it only objects things which take the place of God. If our pleasure starts to be the determining center of our life, it becomes a burden to us, which will finally kill us. If our talent, or our friends, our our partnership, our anything else, takes the role of God, it has a devastating effect on us. It is stealing our life!
There is joy beyond the superficial pleasure which we search so often. There is depth in all things which we do. We need to find it, to transform all our actions, our talent, our friendship and our relationships to be filled with the love of God. This love of the eternal creator brings joy. It is a fantastic light, deep, warm, clear … and eternal! Let us find it and nurture it, day by day. (Roland Potthast)
This is part of the trilogy project “Faith of a Scientist”.