Summary: Filling the God-Shaped Void.
“God in 3-D”
By: Rev. Ken Sauer, Pastor of East Ridge UMC, Chattanooga, TN
A number of years ago, the band Crosby, Stills and Nash wrote these lyrics for a song:
“There’s something happening here
What it is ain’t exactly clear
There’s a man with a gun over there
Telling me I’ve got to beware
I think it’s time we STOP!
Hey what’s that sound
Everybody look what’s going down…”
According to a news source this week, “A safe found in the home of a slain Florida couple known for adopting special-needs children contained about $100,000…
…the source said the suspects in the…shooting deaths believed the safe was the mother lode of valuables at the house, but were unable to get into it.
[The slain couple] had adopted 13 children, and each had two biological children. Police have said nine of the children were home at the time of the invasion…”
“I think it’s time we STOP! Hey what’s that sound? Everybody look what’s going down!”
It has been said that inside each of us is a God-shaped void, which, if it is not filled by God—will be filled by something!
And I believe this to be true!
The “something” which we fill our “God-shaped void” with will determine our happiness, the happiness of those around us, our salvation, and our ability to make a positive difference in this world!
There is a certain “incompleteness” about we humans.
There’s something missing, and most of us can’t seem to get a handle on it.
I spent a bit of time with some college students this past week.
I hadn’t been in a situation where I was just “hanging around” college students for a long time.
As I listened to them talk, I was reminded of how difficult it is to be in your late teens or early 20’s.
So many of these students sounded somewhat lost or incomplete.
The topic of conversation seemed to stay on course—“What am I going to do with my life?”
One young man spoke about being a psychologist so he could: quote: “mess with people’s minds.”
A young lady said she was going to take a course on the construction of fireworks.
When I asked her the reason for taking this course, she said that it would be fun to open a wedding chapel which lights off fireworks after the couples’ “tie the knot.”
This has nothing to do with her major which is zoology!!!
I’m glad I am not at that age any longer.
These were just normal college kids…
…and not bad kids…
…just normal human beings…
…and I remember…
…I remember well what it was like to feel directionless, lost, and incomplete…
…I was no different.
And there are still times now when I have a little taste of those same feelings.
There is an incompleteness about this life…
…there is a void.
And that void can only be filled by the love of God which comes through a relationship with Jesus Christ!
Killing the parents of 13 children for $100,000 dollars in a safe is definitely NOT the answer to our problems.
Drugs, alcohol—all those things—these are not the answer!
“There’s something happening here…
…Everybody look what’s going down…”
In our Scripture Lesson for this morning, the Apostle Paul is writing to the Church in Ephesus, and he shares with them a pray he prays for them.
I like the way the New Revised Standard Version reads this: “I pray that, according to the riches of his glory, he may grant that you may be strengthened in your inner being with power through his Spirit, and that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith, as you are being rooted and grounded in love.
I pray that you may have the power to comprehend with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with the fullness of God.”
Isn’t this the answer to the world’s problems and pain?
Isn’t this the answer to my problems, to yours’?
We need to experience God in 3-D –God in all God’s dimensions, love and fullness!!!
To be filled with the love of Christ and all the fullness of God is what the world needs now!!!
It is the only thing which will ever satisfy!
It is the only thing which will give our lives meaning, direction, and joy!!!
In our Scripture passage Paul is praying for salvation in this present life, and for a unified Church.
His prayer reveals to us that God desires us to experience the fullest form of a truly Christian life!
Perhaps some of us have been going to church our entire lives.
Maybe we have served on numerous committees…