WITHOUT GOD MAN'S LIFE MAKES NO SENSE
P. Samuel Manoharam
How indispensable is God in our lives? One cannot experience God by merely professing faith in Him. We should have to really trust Him and possess Him. When we have God within us, our life lights up and becomes meaningful. Such a life sparkles and radiates beautifully in this world.
Man Is Unique
Every man should ask himself, "Who am I? "Different religions answer this question differently. Christianity answers by saying that man is a unique individual, created by God in His own image, for eternity. Therefore, man has a beginning but no end. For some, life appears to begin with birth and end with death. According to Christianity, after God created man, He breathed into him the breath of life to make him an eternal living soul, immortal and imperishable, with inherent moral and spiritual nature, thus making him different from all other creatures. God created man in His own image and likeness. The reality of man's uniqueness as a human being and his value in God's eyes springs from the truth that God created man for love and fellowship. Man is therefore imbued with an innate dignity. Man, essentially, is a spiritual being, with the capacity for experiencing God. Isn't it marvellous that the human race is the crown and masterpiece of God's creation? God delighted in what He created and regarded man as His companion, someone for Him to love and to have intimate relationship with!
Many of us try hard to make sense of life; we try to end the helpless and pitiable condition of human existence. At the same time, aren't most of us selfish, serving our own interests? Isn't man's self-centred lifestyle a cause of suffering and injustice in the world? The world itself is not so much of a problem; it is we humans who reject God and try to manage life without His help. God wants to put new life, new aspirations, new priorities into us so that we put God first, others next and ourselves last.
To God, therefore, man is invaluable, having a unique collection of divine gifts and abilities. Man's life is indeed a gift of God. God desires to be at the centre of man's life. So, what man thinks, says and does, should be controlled by the thought that God created him for a vital purpose. Life makes sense to us only when it is totally related to God, with personal successes, fame and achievements taking a secondary and less important space.
God's Will And Purpose For Man
If man thinks and does anything contrary to the will and purposes of God, knowingly or unknowingly, he will end up estranging himself from God. He will become desperate and miserable, left to fend for himself, without the divine support. He will have no hope of coping with life's battles. Man can find his origin, his identity, his purpose, his significance and his destiny only in God. If man realises this fact and starts living for God, his life will be radiant and vibrant in all respects.
Our faith in God should serve as an antidote to our life's disappointments, discouragements and anxieties. God gives us hope, because He cares for us. God is in ultimate control of everything in this world as He is in the entire universe. God is personally interested in every one of us. We just have to entrust our cares into His dependable hands.
Without a clear purpose, we are without a reliable foundation to base decisions on and are unable to use our God-given resources meaningfully. Those who do not know why they exist, work irrelevantly, causing conflict, stress and fatigue in their own lives, leading to physical and mental ailments. A meaningful life, with God at the centre, leads to a simpler lifestyle and saner mind-set, resulting in peace of mind. The security this gives can never be taken away from us.
Man Should Know God
Knowing about God and knowing God personally are not one and the same. God's omnipresence, omniscience and omnipotence are attributes that are far beyond our comprehension. But mere knowledge about God's attributes can never make our lives purposeful and meaningful. It is our personal faith in God's Son, the Lord Jesus Christ, which brings us the joy of our sins forgiven, that puts us on the path of understanding God's purpose for us. When we joyfully allow God His rightful place of authority in our hearts, He graciously reveals His plans to us and so we lead a meaningful, fruitful life through an intimate and personal relationship with Him.
Human Heart Is God's Temple
Is it possible then to live without believing in God and without depending upon Him? There is a vacuum in the heart of every man which only God can fill with Himself. He desires to be worshipped in that shrine of the human heart, which is the sacred temple of God, from where He longs to orchestrate and control all our activities. It is said that God has two dwelling places: Heaven and the human heart where he wants to dwell and reign with absolute authority (Isa. 57:15).
What Is Human Heart?
It is the inward life of desire, love and will. It is in our heart that God's Spirit seeks to dwell and not in our mind, as some think. It is only with the heart we can know God and worship Him. It is with the heart we are to seek, love, praise and glorify God. This is what God desires from us.
Conclusion Can a man be the master of his own destiny? Can he attempt something impossible? Why should he be at the mercy of his circumstances when he has a merciful and omnipotent God to look after him in all situations? When we are at our wits' end, we cry out to God for deliverance. Yes, only God can deliver us and lead us through life's journey till we reach our final destiny, in the very presence of God eternally.
We are born in this world for the express purpose of knowing and loving God, who is the Source of life. Our hearts are restless until we come to Him. Saint Augustine said, "You have made us for Yourself. Our hearts find no peace, until they rest in You." Corri ten Boom said, "If you look at the world, you will be distressed. If you look within, you will be depressed. But if you look at Christ, you will be at rest."