Summary: A sermon within a series which faces the question which has plagued humankind more than any other.

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1 Corinthians 13:1-13

“What Gives Life Meaning?:Tripping Over the Furniture”

What gives life meaning?

This is the question which has plagued humankind more than any other question.

Is it consumer goods?

Is it money?

Is it the accumulation of stuff?

Is it ease?

Is it food?

What gives life meaning and where can it be found?

This Advent Season, beginning with this morning, I will be preaching a sermon series which seeks to answer this befuddling conundrum.

This series will take us through all four Sundays in Advent all the way to our Christmas Eve Candlelight Service.

And I’ll only be using one Scripture passage for all five sermons: 1 Corinthians 13

…If we don’t already, we’ll all know this one by heart by Christmas Eve—and that’s a good thing since it is one of the most profound and moving passages in the entire Bible.

I believe it gets to the heart of what it is all about.

My prayer is that throughout these next five sermons we will all come to a better understanding of what truly gives meaning to life!!!

A psychologist who has been counseling teenagers for over 25 years has recently begun to see a new breed of unhappy kids—smart, successful, and privileged kids who feel utterly lost and empty.

One client in particular typified this kind of unhappy teen.

Late on a Friday afternoon—the last appointment of her week—the psychologist saw a 15-year-old girl who was “bright, personable, highly pressured by her adoring, but frequently preoccupied parents.”

The girl was also very “angry.”

The psychologist quickly recognized the girl’s “cutter disguise”—a long-sleeve t-shirt pulled half-way over her hand, with an opening torn in the cuff for her thumb.

The psychologist was startled to find that the girl had used a razor to carve the following word into her forearm—“Empty.”

A well-known Christian tells the following story about his home town of Naples, Florida, which he calls “one of the garden spots of the world.”

“It’s an almost nirvana for all golfers, and they all come there.

They’re all CEO’s of major corporations, and they retire to Naples, and this is “it”—27 golf courses and miles of sparkling beach and the best country clubs.

I watch these guys; they’re powerful people.

They have this New York look on their face; they’re determined.

But now, all of a sudden, they start measuring their lives by how many golf games they can get in.”

The man continues, “I often say to them, ‘Do you really want to live your life counting up the number of times you chase that little white ball around those greens?’

And they kind of chuckle, but it’s a nervous chuckle, because in six months they’ve realized how banal their lives are, and they’ve got beautiful homes—castles—and when they get bored with that, they build a bigger castle, and they’re miserable.”

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