What Gives Life Meaning?

Ravi Zacharias asked: “Can man live without God?”, and then the question: “What gives life meaning?”[1] He said that the response we give to the last determines how we answer the first. He spoke about four things we must consider: first, our sense of wonder. Wonder he defines as seeing the world through the eyes of a child, the enchantment a child has in everyday living, or in looking at our own bodies and how we are “fearfully and wonderfully made”. Second, we need to look at the miracle of love. Third, hope beyond the grave. Some of us believe that life ends at death; others hope for heaven. Some acknowledge hell; others do not. If one believes in God, and that the Bible is the word of God, then both heaven and hell are realities. Our hope lies in heaven.

Finally, what are our moral absolutes? Ravi stated that without moral absolutes, we cannot find meaning in life. Are there moral absolutes? Again if one believes in God and that the Bible is the word of God, we have those statements of morality. They include: do not kill, do not lie, do not steal, and love God and others. Love is the greatest of all the beliefs we have, and it surely gives life meaning. Perhaps it is the only moral absolute shared by all. Yet there are cultures that do not accept all of them. Murder is OK for a cause. Lying is OK to an enemy. Love is meant for a select few; we are not meant to love everyone. Is that really true? Many have created their own rules, and some declare that there are no absolutes. Societies change over time and what was accepted in the past can become unacceptable in the present; sometimes for the good of all, sometimes not.

I have found something else that gives life meaning for me. There is a “work” I love to do, have wanted to do since I was a child. Nothing else compares. In the recent shutdowns due to the Covid virus, I wasn’t able to do that work, but I readjusted, finding other tasks. Recently the door opened up for me to again pursue what I believe is my calling. There was a planning meeting as others involved in the same work came together. I never expected the joy I felt as we met. This was what I was meant for! Nothing else gives me such joy.

Do you have a sense of wonder about life? Do you have others you  love? Do you have hope beyond the grave? Do moral absolutes guide your day? Is there any task that brings you joy? What gives life meaning for you?

“I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; wonderful are Your works, and my soul knows it very well.” Psalm 139:14


[1] This speech can be heard at: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=onzXle1MrHU&list=WL&index=6&t=0s

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