Friday, October 10, 2014

Blog # 376 A MEASURE

Blog # 376  A  MEASURE

          I remember one time I was with a group of high school boys for a discussion on religion in our lives. Up in the front of the room where I was standing there was an ordinary table.  After we offered a prayer and all of us sat down I pointed out the table to the boys and asked if anyone had an idea as to how tall the table was. There were fifteen of us in the room. The table was there when we came  and would be there when we left. All of us had to agree it was a certain height no matter how we felt about it.  The truth as to the height of the table was fixed. It was up to us to find that out.

        Different boys came up and looked the table over. One boy measured the table against his hip and then gave his opinion. As opinions were given I wrote them on the chalk board. We ended up with seven different opinions as to how tall the table was. Some of the boys did not give an opinion. All who did were definitely sincere.  We had a clear-cut problem on our hands - one table, fifteen boys, and seven different opinions as to how tall the table was.

           What could be done?  I reached into my pocket and brought out a tape measure. Now we could solve the problem.  We had a measuring rule.  It was thirty and three quarter inches tall.  All agreed.  Some had to add to their opinion to bring it up to the truth. Some had to subtract from their opinion to make it true. 

           Then we applied all of this to our life. All of us are alive, obviously.  But what is the meaning of our life?  What would permit us to label our life successful or not? What is its purpose?  What is true happiness? Will we live forever, or die the same as a cat? We realized all of such questions about our life are certainly important.

            Different scholars down through the centuries have answered these questions differently.  Some have said that life is for the here and now, for pleasure, for money, for popularity, or a combination of such opinions. Some have said we will live forever. Some have said not so. In order to arrive at the truth we need a measure that claims to be  true and upon which we can depend in coming to the truth.

             God has made this claim and has given us a measure for our life in Jesus.  But just as we  accept a measuring rule in order to  measure a table, we have to  know and accept Jesus as the measure of our life  There is a certain element of risk in this.  We call it trust. We do not and can not know on our own all the answers to the questions we need to ask about ourselves and our lives.  Jesus claimed to be the Eternal Word of God on earth, Emmanuel. Jesus claimed to speak with the authority of God and to reveal to us truths about ourselves and all of creation that we could never know if He had not come and revealed them.   Thank you, Jesus!  Help us grow in our knowledge and love for you as our lives go on.

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