Friday, January 13, 2006
Some years ago, there was this movie called "Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure." Someday my kids are going to make a movie about some of the great ideas I've had on our summer vacations. They'll call it "Dad's Excruciating Adventures." Like the day I woke everyone up at 3:00 A.M. to get the view from the top of the mountain. We were vacationing in Maine. And I had read that if you were at the top of Cadillac Mountain at daybreak, you would be one of the first Americans to see the sunrise that day. And how could we miss that thrill? Right?
I got everyone up, stuffed a doughnut in their mouth so they wouldn't wake up the campground, bundled them into the car, assuring them all the time, "You're going to love this." Well, at dawn there we were with a handful of other adventurers - waiting for the sun to appear. And waiting. And waiting. The kids were turning increasingly hostile. We never saw the sun come up that morning - it was covered with clouds. We had made the valiant effort to get to the top of the mountain only to find the view there a big disappointment.
I'm Ron Hutchcraft and I want to have A Word With You today about "Feeling Down at the Top."
Maybe you know that feeling. You got somewhere you really wanted to go or you got someone you really wanted and the view has turned out to be disappointing. The ancient Jewish King, Solomon, knew that feeling. He was the wealthiest man of his generation. He records in the Biblical book Ecclesiastes how he tried every pleasure, every relationship, and every conquest he wanted.
Here's how he describes the view from the top of his mountain. It's our word for today from the Word of God, Ecclesiastes 2:17. "So I hated life, because the work that is done under the sun was grievous to me. All of it is meaningless, a chasing after the wind."
There are plenty of modern Solomons - like a successful attorney I know of. He owns what he wants. He's respected in the community. He was planning a long trip with a private pilot in a small plane. Someone asked him if he was concerned about the plane crashing. He said, "I don't care if it does. What's the reason for living anyway?"
So many people got what they dreamed of - the relationships, the possessions, and the pleasures only to find the view was a disappointment. Why? Because of what Solomon discovered. He said in Ecclesiastes 3:11, "God has set eternity in the hearts of men." Earth has nothing big enough to fill the eternal hole in our heart. That's why Jesus summed it up by asking, "What shall it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses his own soul?"
There are basically two categories of people; those who haven't got what they want and think that's why they don't have peace, and those who have gotten what they want and they know that there's no peace there. Enter the one the Bible calls the Prince of Peace - Jesus Christ - the one who said just before His death, "My peace I leave with you."
The reason for your life is summed up in six Biblical words recorded in Colossians 1:16, "All things were created by him and for him." That's talking about Jesus. But we haven't lived for Him; we've pursued our own kingdom. And God has declared a death penalty for that sin of ours.
From adolescence through adulthood, we keep thinking what we're looking for is just over that next hill. But no matter how many hills you've climbed, the peace and meaning wasn't there, was it? You need to climb one more hill - the one with that cross on the top where Jesus is dying for your sin so you can finally experience the God-relationship you were made for.
If you're tired of climbing mountains to nowhere, come to that cross. Tell Jesus Christ you want to belong to Him, that He is your only hope. If you want that relationship with Him, I would love to help you begin that. We set it up at our website yoursforlife.net so that you can either read or hear a presentation that I've prepared - a brief one - of how you can be sure you belong to Jesus. It's yoursforlife.net. I encourage you to go there today. Or if you'd like to receive Yours For Life in print, you can call toll free at 877-741-1200.
Life is a series of disappointing views until we give our lives to the only One who can give it eternal meaning. Every other destination will leave you feeling hollow inside until you're home in the waiting arms of Jesus Christ.