What is the Meaning of Life
Trust in God or Circumstances?
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WHAT IS THE MEANING OF LIFE? Program 74 Trust in God or Circumstances? by Ernest O’Neill
We’re talking on this program each day about the meaning of life. Why do you exist? What’s the purpose of your existence? Why are you alive? We have looked at some of the explanations that various religious leaders and philosophers have given. But we’ve come to the conclusion that they all share the same limitations we do. They’ve never been anywhere else but this world. So it’s very difficult to expect them to give us any kind of useful or authoritative information on the reason for this world’s existence, if they have never been anywhere but this world.
Indeed, there’s only one person that this world knows anything about that has been off this world, who has left it, said that he would come back, and actually came back and lived for more than a month with his friends and with many who did not know him very intimately, and has proven to them and to succeeding generations of historians and critics that he really did come back from being dead. He is the man known as Jesus of Nazareth.
We’ve been listening to the explanations he gives for the reasons for our existence. You remember, if you’ve been listening to past broadcasts, one of the things he said most clearly was, “Whatever is born of the flesh, is flesh.” It can’t be anything else but flesh. But, of course, you won’t believe that.
He said that you have desires and needs you never seem able to satisfy whatever you do with your positions. That’s most true for all of us in regards to security. I think all of us were brought up with mothers and fathers who probably encouraged us to make our own way in life and to provide for ourselves because no one else would.
Probably most of us had some experience in the past years of either the fears, or the worries or the anxieties of our dads and moms about unemployment, about strikes and about the disasters that came upon Europe, it seems, especially. So, most of us have a healthy fear of not having sufficient money to provide the clothing, food and shelter that we need to keep alive in this present world.
Most of us end up in that rather ironic position where we struggle, and struggle and struggle to try to get enough money to buy enough food, clothing and shelter to keep ourselves alive so we can bring into the world other children who will struggle, and struggle and struggle to get enough money to buy enough food, shelter and clothing so that they can bring children into the world who will…ad absurdum. Most of us know that often we’re not making much on it. Indeed, we saw our dads and mums live and die, in not quite poverty, but certainly not in great abundance. We can see ourselves almost doing the same thing.
Many of us are increasingly frustrated about our own inability to provide that security and stability for us, and for our children and for our wives that we feel we were made for. That’s what Jesus said. Jesus said that the reason for that is, it’s not security you were made for. Security is simply an attribute of love. You were made for love. That’s why. That’s why you feel the need for security; you really feel the need for love. Of course, what we have been saying over the past few broadcasts is that that’s dead true in regard to ourselves and our own parents.
Often we didn’t know the little money they had. We didn’t know how little they were able to provide for us, but they loved us. It didn’t matter how little we had in the house. We had a great sense of security and stability when we were five or up to maybe when we were 9 or 11 years of age, because we had somebody there who was greater than ourselves, older than ourselves, who knew more things than we did and still whom we knew
cared about us.
That’s what Jesus says. Jesus says, “Listen, your Father, who created you, put you here so that you could learn to live in trust in Him. That’s it. Who do you think gives you your money? Who do you think gave you your job? Who do you think has supplied you with the wherewithal when you haven’t had a job? Who do you think has arranged your cash flow, has arranged the payables and receivables in such a way that they just match at the right time?”
How often have you come through a hard time and you’ve wondered, “Where did the money come from? I don’t know where it came from. How did the bills get paid? I don’t know how they get paid.” He says to us, “That’s because there is a dear Father, who is my own Father, and who loves you as His own children, who cares for you and provides for you.
When He put you on this earth, He arranged the whole economic system so that you would have enough. Don’t worry! You will have enough. That is what He said: “Don’t be anxious about your life, what you’ll eat or what you’ll drink, nor about your body, what you’ll put on. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothing? (You’re not going to spend your life worrying about clothing, are you?) Look at the birds of the air. They neither sow nor reap, nor gather into barns; yet, your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?
Which of you by being anxious can add one cubit to the span of his life? Why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow. They neither toil nor spin. Yet, I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But, listen, if God so clothes the grass of the field which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O men of little faith? Therefore, don’t be anxious, saying, what shall we eat? Or, what shall we drink? Or, what shall we wear? For the Gentiles seek all these things and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things shall be yours as well.”
In other words, for goodness sake, start being interested in your dear God, who has made the mountains and who controls the oceans and who will not leave you without. Start trusting in Him; stop trusting in things. Stop trying to slave and slave and burrow into the dirt to get enough money and things to make you secure. You’ll never be secure that way. You’ll never get a big enough house. You’ll never get a house that is safe from the deterioration of the neighborhood. You’ll never get enough money that is safe from the problems of the banks and that the economy gets into. You’ll never get enough clothing that will not go out of fashion or will not get hole-y. You never will.
What is far better than that is to have somebody faithful who will always supply you with whatever you need. In other words, it’s far better to be able to trust a heart, a loving heart. That’s what you need. That’s the only thing that will be able to supply you with security. The money doesn’t supply you with security. Security, through the mathematical calculations of your possessions, is not satisfying to you. This kind of security is not what you’re looking for. You’re not looking for material security. You’re trying to pretend that you are, but you’re not looking for a material security.
You’re looking for the security of some dear heart that you can trust, some dear heart that has enough resources that can actually provide for you. What you’re looking for is an assurance that somebody loves you enough to take care of you. Jesus said, “That’s exactly the situation. That’s why you were made with a need for security. So stop looking to things for it. They will never satisfy you.”
“Start beginning to realize that behind that blue sky up there (just look out of your automobile window, or
look out of your bedroom window in the morning, or look out of your living room window)… and realize behind that great sky is a dear Father, who told you through me, ‘Don’t be anxious about your life, what you’ll eat, or, what you’ll drink, nor about your body that you’ll put on. Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothing? Your Heavenly Father will supply you with all these. This is not just â€˜pie-in-the-sky’ when you die. That’s true right here and now.” That’s what this man Jesus said and He has been up there and He knows.