O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth! You have set Your glory above the heavens. Out of the mouth of babies and infants, You have established strength because of Your foes, to still the enemy and the avenger. – When I look at your heavens, the work of Your fingers, the moon and the stars, which You have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, and the son of man that you care for him? – Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings and crowned him with glory and honor. You have given him dominion over the works of Your hands; You have put all things under his feet, all sheep and oxen, and also the beasts of the field, the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea, whatever passes along the paths of the seas. – O LORD, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth!
~ Psalm 8
Oh beloved, it is true.
We are a people who have within us a deep desire for meaning; to discover a purpose for our existence. We know that we have come from something (“ex” out of, “is” to be; existence), but on our own, this remains completely outside of our comprehension. Still, the ‘why’ of our being teases us.
In quieter moments we seem to touch it, but like a skittish kitten, or like the writer, Bruce Cockburn, wrote:
Something jeweled slips away
Round the next bend with a splash
Laughing at the hands I hold out
Only air within their grasp…
However, our problem is so close to us, that in cases like this, finding the answer feels impossible. We are just too wrapped around the axle of who we think we are. We keep looking at the meaning of our existence, as though it were to extract meaning, maybe just like we have been extracted from the matter of the cosmos. We bumble along, year after year, trying to find satisfaction (the filling of “me”). But, even that idea misses the point. So, when we think we’ve gotten a little satisfaction – it was not what we wanted.
As this continues, it brings a terrible, yawning – even abysmal – sense of emptiness. It brings the terrible (we think) dawning of an idea… Maybe I am not really all that important. Maybe I am a mistake of the terrible mistake of the universe. Maybe there is no reason for me to exist.
Still the problem continues, especially for those of us conditioned to simple answers in 10 minute videos, or 2-minute microwave meals. We think, that if we just push the right few buttons, ingest the right combination of chemicals, and have the right amount of purchasing power to conjure up meaning – that we could find it. But we never do.
Oh beloved, you are halfway there. Join this fool of a writer for the rest of the story!
Can we see it?
Yes, dear ones. You, me, everyone are meaningless.
WAIT! i am not flying off into some sort of nihilistic heresy. We are meaningless, but not because we are nothing, or have no meaning. Outside of the context of our relationship with everything else. Each of us were never designed to be individual beings with our own innate meaning. In fact, no being has meaning apart from their relationship with others.
HEY! What about God? Glad you asked.
Our Maker has never been alone. This unfathomable One is not a solitary individual. He has always been the basis for all existence, and has been Face-to-Face with His own effulgence in the Son that has forever looked back at His Dad. And between them is a Love so real that He is another Person forming a Chain of Love that has bound the Three of Them together so closely that They are Truly One…
Notice this. God is not ‘one’ like an individual. God is One like an utter Union of Three Infinite Beings.
And this is where, hopefully, we can begin to see why our own attempts at purpose have failed. We have tried to eek some sort of satisfaction by taking that which we can from others. G_d, on the other hand, has Lived in selfless Love for eternity. None of these Beings have any needs. They are utterly full in and satisfied, in and of Themselves.
This however, is the secret of the whole thing. The mystery of the Trinity, shows us the mystery of our meaning. G_d never needed anything else. They have always been so full, that all They have done is submitted to each other in joyful communion, friendship, joy, peace, power and presence. They have lived in such a way that their infinite meaning chose to spill out onto a creation. This creation is vast, complex and astoundingly beautiful…. it is also crowned with:
You, beloved, and me.
The point is not that hard to understand when we embrace the simple reality that Love is the profound concern for the wellbeing of another, without regard as to whether the other loves in return. G_d has Lived this ThemSelves forever. Needless and Wantless, they have poured out into each Other – and, now into us.
There is nothing we can do for The Triune One. They don’t need us. Our physical existence is meaningless in that sense. Our feelings were right, but for all the wrong reasons. Instead being condemned to returning to subatomic dust, our desolation of isolation is suddenly filled to the full when we choose to receive the Love of the Trinity. And then to Live as They do: FOR others, in self-less giving, and willing the good of another alone, empty person.
But, in receiving the Truth, and then Living it out, suddenly the mystery becomes perfectly clear. Relationship is, and has always been the final stuff of reality.
In giving to those who can give nothing back, we are filled.
In suffering for those who don’t deserve it, we find healing.
In putting others first, we find our true center.
In willing the good of others, we discover the good we have always been searching for.
And we can clearly see this, in what G_d has already done for us.
So, have you ever wondered why you exist? It is not a mystery. Allow yourself to be known by the Jesus Who, as part of the Trinity Who has shared Their Life with all of us, for no other reason Their to share needless, want-less, unconditional Love with all.
Tonight is your night. The mystery of Faith has been solved. Enjoy it.
The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments
of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.
The true neighbor will risk his position, his prestige, and even his life for the welfare of others.
~Martin Luther King, Jr.
Written by Makala Doulos: Makala Doulos is a child of G_d, a husband to his wife, a father to his children, and a teacher to his students. But mostly, he is a prisoner set free by Jesus. Love has invaded his life, crushed it, and made it new. Now, G_d’s Love is what constrains him to live in full surrender to the freedom The Father and Son and Holy Spirit have bought for us all. Grace and Peace to you all.
Think About This: “The mystery of the Bible should teach us, at one and the same time, our nothingness and our greatness, producing humility and animating hope. -Henry Dundas Melville (1742-1811)