G. K. Chesterton, an English writer, once said that "every man who visits a prostitute is looking for God." Really? I believe he's right. In fact, I would suggest that every person who buys hundreds of dollars worth of lottery tickets in hopes of striking it big is looking for God. Every person who tries to get high at a Vicadin party is looking for God. I realize that these people may not know at the time that they are looking for God. They probably don't think, I want to connect with God today, so I'm going to go have an affair with someone who is not my spouse. That's not quite how it happens. But every person who wanders from God's truth, everyone who commits sin, who strays, is looking for the satisfaction and fulfillment that only God can provide.
Blaise Pascal, a seventeenth-century French philosopher and mathematician, said that people have a trace of happiness, but it's only a trace of the original happiness that the first human beings had. We've lost true and full happiness. No person is as happy as they were created to be. Pascal describes this as the "infinite abyss," a giant hole that only God can satisfy.
An article in Sun Times talks about Derrick Rose's new condo at the top of the Trump Tower. It cost 2.8 million dollars. Part of me envied that. I thought, What would it be like to live that kind of life? What would it be like to live at the top of that tower? Living there wouldn't make any us happier. It could never fill the infinite abyss, the hole, in every one of us. Only God can fill and satisfy our longing for happiness.
So what hope is there for people who seem to have everything but still lack what is most important in life, the only thing that satisfies?
This morning we're going to look at ...
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Steve Mathewson is pastor of the Evangelical Free Church of Libertyville, Illinois, and teaches preaching for the doctoral programs at Denver Seminary and Western Seminary, and the Master of Divinity program at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School.