A God-Shaped Vacuum

When Jesus saw Nathanael approaching, he said of him, “Here truly is an Israelite in whom there is no deceit.”
“How do you know me?” Nathanael asked.
Jesus answered, “I saw you while you were still under the fig tree before Philip called you.”
Then Nathanael declared, “Rabbi, you are the Son of God; you are the king of Israel.” John 1:47-48

Have you ever met someone that you just connected with right away? That’s kind of what’s happening here, although Jesus clearly has the “upper hand,” so to speak. Nathanael’s proclamation about Jesus, though accurate, is premature if they had just met him. But it seems that Nathanael is a seeker, which is implied in Jesus’ statement. He wants to know the truth and will find it at any cost.

Every day we come across “truth seekers,” though they will not tell you that blatantly. The people who abuse drugs, alcohol, and people are seeking the truth in those forms. They (and we} think that the next drink or the next snort of cocaine or even the next conquest in women will satisfy. Those are the obvious “truth seekers.” The not-so-obvious truth seekers want to win the lottery, find the right man to marry, or are obsessed with politics, to name three types. There’s an emptiness they’re trying to fill. Thinking 1) money, 2) a good man, and 3) the best possible government solution to fix a problem is merely deluding ourselves. Again, the emptiness is different and may not be as much as those abusers, the end result is the same: an empty heart.

The longer I’m a Christian, the more I believe Blaise Pascal who wrote that “within each of us is a God-shaped vacuum, that only God can fill.”

No matter where we are in life, our mission should be two-fold: 1) to make sure that void in our own lives is filled, and 2) to help others fill that void.


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