Summary: Only in Jesus can you find what you are looking for...
Colossians 2:8-10: In Christ you Have it All
See to it that no one takes you captive through hollow and deceptive philosophy, which depends on human tradition and the basic principles of this world rather than on Christ. 9 For in Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form, 10 and you have been given fullness in Christ, who is the head over every power and authority.
All that work, all that effort, for nothing! Do you have a favorite commercial? One that I saw recently and maybe will see again pictures this man coming out to his car parked on the street. It's the morning after a major snow storm and his car his completely covered in snow and the plow and pushed all the road snow and ice up against his car and all he has to clean off his car his sleeve. And so he gets to work and he's not really dressed right for this whole situation and he has to chip away at the ice on his windshield with his credit card, and finally he's done. And he takes a step back and presses the button that unlocks the car and turns on the lights - and do you know what happens next? All that work, all that effort, for nothing! The whole time, he was working on the wrong car. He presses the button and the car one spot over makes the noise and the lights turn on. And he can't believe it! He presses the button again and again and the car he has spent all that time on shows no signs of life. And the car one spot over, still covered with all that snow and ice, makes all the noises to show that he had been working on the wrong car all that time.
Have you ever felt like that? I hope you never have the experience that man had - but have you ever put forth a lot of effort, tried really hard, and in the end, it was all for nothing.
There are many people in this world, and maybe you know some of them, or maybe you're one of them yourself - people who are working very hard at life, very busy, exhausted, trying very hard at their jobs and personal life and school life and health and everything else - trying very hard. And yet, as time goes on they start to realize, something is not right. Something is missing. I'm not feeling the joy and satisfaction and contentment from all that I'm doing. I'm still empty. I think I've been dusting off the wrong car all this time.
How do I get rid of this empty and tired feeling in my life? Do I need to try harder? Does God have an answer for this? Is there a way to feel complete? A way to feel content? Or do I have to spend my whole life always so busy, and always so empty? Let's see what God wants to teach us here in these verses from the book of Colossians.
Now a little background… the people to whom these words were written lived in a city called Colossi. Back in those days they were being told that they were lacking something. They were missing something in life. "The things you believe about God and about Jesus are outdated," they were told. "Not relevant. If you really want to be happy, if you really want to be content and find joy and peace in your life, we have some things to teach you. There's so much more - you're missing it." And so the Christians were starting to abandon their faith in Jesus. They were looking for something bigger, better, something that felt more modern, more exciting - but the philosophy being shared with them was hollow and deceptive, the Apostle Paul writes.
Can you see the hollow and deceptive philosophy of today? Have you ever felt the pull? A man is a Christian all his life. But then he graduates from college, he gets a job. He's surrounded by people who don't have the same Christian upbringing that he had. He feels like he's missing something, the things they all talk about, they things they all do on the weekends. "I'm missing something," he says. And so he starts to experiment. Whatever feels good to you, whatever makes you happy at the moment, just trust in yourself, whatever you feel - that's the philosophy of all of his coworkers, and so he tries it too. Trust in youself! And that young ma slowly starts down this path that lands him in a world far far away from God. He has been taken captive by human tradition and the basic principles of the world, and all of it is hollow and deceptive.