“The gospel isn’t advice: It’s the good news that you don’t need to earn your way to God; Jesus has already done it for you. And it’s a gift that you receive by sheer grace—through God’s thoroughly unmerited favor.
– Timothy Keller, Author and Pastor
Each one of us has an innate longing for something more in this world. Most of us get it confused with some other more pressing, immediate hunger. We think we want fame, wealth, a relationship, a different job – you name it, and most of us have chased it down the wrong rabbit hole.
Most often, the problem is that once we get it, we’re just as unhappy and unfulfilled as we were before attaining it. Meaning, we have not dug deep enough or far enough to understand or achieve what we’re genuinely craving or hungering for… which can be summed up in one word: God. Many of us are making wealth, fame, or a relationship with someone else, our savior, and ultimately this mistake leaves us disillusioned and depressed.
Remember the Bible story of the paralyzed man being lowered into the hut for Jesus to cure? Jesus’ first instinct is not to heal his physical infirmity but to forgive his sins. Jesus understands that to heal truly, he must dig down deeper to the root cause of a man’s pain – sin and Godlessness. By healing and forgiving his more profound shame first and then granting him his earthly desire second, which is to walk, Jesus gives him a path free of burden or guilt and a roadmap that leads back to God.
And that is where we often get Jesus wrong. We look to him like a genie in a bottle to grant us our wishes and free us from financial or social paralysis, when really He is the savior who paves a way to achieve our most beautiful longing, which is ultimately a relationship with Him. We just have to dig deeper to know this.