Life Goes On
My neighbor recently came over as I was detailing my motorcycle, "I'm drunk and I'm broke," he said. I retrieved him a chair because his former state was true. He offered me a beer, which I have been inclined to share, but that day I wasn't interested. He said, "don't be afraid of one beer. Life goes on." That was his repeated statement for the evening.
His wife suddenly passed away a couple of years ago. I asked him if he had been thinking about here her lately and he said, "I think about her all the time, but life goes on." I shared with him some of the family loss I experienced and he said, "really, I am sorry, but life goes on."
His drunken state was a reflection of his despair over what seems meaningless determinism. I had mentioned that my nephew made bad choices and was killed, and that if he had made better choices he would be alive. My neighbor's response, "You don't know that, life goes on." The implication was that it is all determined and nothing would have prevented it, it was meant to be.
Reflecting on his predicament it is sad to realize that his understanding, though warped, rings of truth. He is experiencing the groan of creation under the weight of sin, the consequence of living in a fallen world, and as Solomon said in Ecclesiastes, "life goes on."
However, God has a plan. It was established before the foundation of the world, that Jesus, the Christ, would die for the sins of the world and reconcile all who believe to a right standing with Him. This is the eternal plan of God realized in Christ.
The hopeless despair that the world works hard to climb out of through self-actualization, or cover up with mind numbing chemicals isn't all there is. Even Solomon pointed his readers to God in the end. Yes, life goes on and sometimes its pain is overwhelming, but in Christ there is Hope, in Christ there is Peace, in Christ there is Life, in Christ there is meaning and purpose.
We are a part of God's eternal purpose. As the church we manifest the mystery of God's plan to a lost and hurting world. My neighbor needs a listening, none judgmental, ear to listen to his pain. But, the only thing that will give him peace is found in the eternal purpose of God in Christ. I'm just saying...
Eph. 3:11 "This was according to the eternal purpose that he has realized in Christ Jesus our Lord,"