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It is obvious to me that I am personally very limited. Of course, my body and life clearly are limited in what they can do; for example, I will die someday. In my daily life now, though, I also clearly am limited. I lack security. I always seem to long for more and more. No matter how well my life goes, ultimately, I feel incomplete.
Others seem to struggle with similar feelings. In fact, I am fascinated that almost everyone I ask, no matter what they believe, wishes there was a loving God on whom they could depend. Generally, when genuine needs exist, there is a way to fulfill them. People thirst, but there is water. People hunger, but there is food. People crave sex and companionship, and there are other people. As C. S. Lewis concluded,
“If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world.”
But, of all the religious and spiritual beliefs that exist, why the Christian belief system? Again, to me, if I search out different ways to meet my needs for security, attachment, and completeness, the Christian story seems most fulfilling. In this story – more than any other (that I know of anyway) – there is a sense that there is a perfect Being passionate about being intimate with me to the point of great sacrifice. When I am really honest with myself, this is what I seek: “to know, even as I am fully known (1 Corinthians 13:12).”
Or, as Timothy Keller wrote in “The Prodigal God:”
“In the beginning of the book of Genesis we learn the reason why all people feel like exiles, like we aren’t really home. We are told that we were created to live in the garden of God. That was the world we were built for, a place in which there was no parting from love, no decay or disease. It was all these things because it was life before the face of God, in his presence. . . The Bible says that we have been wandering spiritual exiles ever since. That is, we have been living in a world that no longer fits our deepest longings. Though we long for bodies that ‘run and are not weary,’ we have become subject to disease, aging, and death. Though we need love that lasts, all our relationships are subject to the inevitable entropy of time, and they crumble in our hands. Even people who stay true to us die and leave us, or we die and leave them. Though we long to make a difference in the world through our work, we experience endless frustration. We never fully realize our hopes and dreams. We may work hard to re-create the home that we have lost, but, says the Bible, it only exists in the presence of the heavenly father from which we have fled.”