Summary: What is the chief end of man, asks the Shorter Catechism? To enjoy God and glorify Him forever!

Psalm 73:23-28

Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand. You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory. Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. Those who are far from you will perish; you destroy all who are unfaithful to you. But as for me, it is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign LORD my refuge; I will tell of all your deeds.

Ephesian 3:14-21

For this reason I kneel before the Father, from whom his whole family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge-- that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God. Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

One of the questions that has haunted human life for centuries is "what is the purpose of life?" Billy Crystal, in the movie CITY SLICKERS, addresses a group of 9 year olds about life, and his remarks reflect his own search for some meaning in his life. Being depressed about his life, he tends to depress the kids.

Looking at these innocent children, he says, "When you’re a teenager, you think you can do anything, and you do. "Your 20’s are a blur. 30’s you raise a family, make a little money, and think, ’Gee what happened to my 20’s?’ 40’s you grow a little pot belly, you grow another chin. The music starts to get too loud. One of your old girl friends from high school becomes a grandmother. 50’s you’ll have minor surgery. You’ll call it a procedure, but its a surgery.60’s you’ll have major surgery. The music is still too loud, but it doesn’t matter because you cant’ hear anymore anyway. 70’s you and the wife retire to Fort Lauderdale, Florida. You start eating dinner at 2 in the afternoon. Lunch around 10, and breakfast the night before. You spend most of your time walking around the Mall looking for the ultimate soft yogurt and muttering to yourself, ’how come the kids don’t call, how come the kids don’t call?’ 80’s you have a major stroke, You end up babbling to some Jamaican nurse whom your wife can’t stand but whom you call momma."

Now, later in the movie, Billy Crystal’s character goes on vacation with three other middle aged men. They are all going through a mid life crisis. In an effort to rediscover themselves, they sign up for a vacation on a western ranch, in which tourists heard cattle from one ranch to another.

During the vacation, Billy Crystal’s character develops a friendship with a rough cowboy played by Jack Palace. Palace looks at Crystal and says, "You know, year after year, I see you guys come and go. You’re all the same. You work in your suits and ties and when you reach your 39th birthday you come out here hoping to find the meaning of life."

Crystal looks at him and says, "I suppose you already know the meaning of life."

"Of course I do," says the cowboy. "It’s this."

And he holds up one finger.

"Your finger is the meaning of life?" asks Crystal?

"No you idiot. But its one thing."

"What’s the one thing?"

"Can’t tell you, " says the cowboy. And of course, for the rest of the movie, Crystal is searching and eventually finds that one thing that is the meaning of life.

I remember when my son was an infant, he had some large plastic keys. I guess they were for teething or something. I know that they are common toys for infants. Well, a friend of mine came over and as we were talking, he noticed those over sized keys.

"What in the world do these keys unlock," my friend asked.

In a feeble attempt at humor, I said, "Ah,that is the key that unlocks the mystery of the meaning of life."

"Wonderful," my friend said, "Now if we could just remember where we put the lock."

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