This morning I found myself fighting temptation. I had an appointment with our tax preparer whose office is in Federal Way. On the way home, I was enjoying the drive because of reduced traffic, and as I began to listen to some music from my youth (Janis Joplin and The Mommas and the Papas to be exact) I had this urge to just keep on driving for a few hours. However, things I need to finish at home and the unfairness of taking a road trip without my bride by my side directed me to head home.
As I listened to the music, my mind turned to the number of artists from that time period who died from drug overdoses. The prevailing question in such cases is normally "How can someone who has so much going for them, end up that way?" I remember watching a documentary on Janis Joplin's life which included footage of her attending a high school reunion. Although famous, to those from her high school, she still seemed like the odd duck. The film showed the pain in her eyes at feeling the ostracization from the people she grew up around. She laughed it off but the hurt was etched on her face. It was easy to imagine that when she was in that school as a teen, she never truly fit in.
Not fitting in, ostracization, loneliness, a lack of healthy human connection often drives people to seek comfort in the drugs that caused so many promising artists to overdose. Although famous, there was a void in their lives that they tried to fill with drugs. Although not everyone seeks to fill such void with drugs, the sense of a void that needs to be filled exists among many. Some seek to fill the void with a career, sexual gratification, materialism, retail therapy, money, fame, or power.
All these things will fade, all these things are fickle, all these things can be like the froth on a beverage. It looks like it is something when in fact, there is no real substance to it. The prophet Isaiah wrote in Isaiah 40:8 [The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever.] John wrote in John 1:1 [In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God] That word is Jesus Christ. Only He can fill the void in men's hearts with something that will not fade, with something that is permanent, and with something that has true substance. In Him the void in our lives is filled with love, forgiveness, acceptance, and purpose. Not for a time, but for eternity.
Have a blessed day