Listen: Chris Witts presents Morning Devotions.
In the hit movie Bruce Almighty, the main character—mild-mannered, good-natured Bruce—is continually confounded and stymied in his quest for success by ill-fated things that happen. Convinced that God has treated him unfairly, Bruce challenges the way the Almighty doles out his blessings.
Bruce Nolan (Jim Carrey) is a mediocre news reporter in midlife crisis. He complains to his girlfriend that God does a poor job of running the world, and he could do far better. To his surprise, God (played by Morgan Freeman) gives him the chance. God is only too willing to give Bruce a shot at driving the winds of fortune, so he gives him all his mighty powers.
Bruce immediately sets out to fill the emptiness in his life by satisfying his every earthly desire, only to discover that he’s even emptier than before. All the while a song plays wistfully in the background:
Does the world seem grey with empty longing,
Wearing every shade of cynical
And do you ever feel that
There is something missing?
There’s a God-shaped hole in all of us
And the restless soul is searching
There’s a God-shaped hole in all of us
And it’s a void only He can fill.
A God-shaped hole
‘A God-shaped hole’—I guess you’ve heard that before. In the process of acquiring the power of God, Bruce begins to realise it’s not all that great as he thought it would be. Why do you think that is? Because Bruce is not wired to be God. Neither am I nor are you. We are basically self-centred and only interested in our issues in life.
So many people are not that keen to join a church or start becoming religious. But I think there are times when we stop in the quiet moments of the day or night, and ponder the question, Is there more to life? Surely I can be happy and not feel so miserable?
If you feel like your life is being wasted away, it’s time to evaluate why. Having feelings of emptiness is a sure sign something is wrong. Maybe your focus needs to change—and you’re hoping like mad someone will come along soon and offer some explanation.
Secularism and the unseen world
Have you heard the word ‘secularism’. It means that the universe we can see and measure is all there is. A good bit of it is invisible, like radio waves and gravity, but it is all part of the physical universe, and secularism says that is all there is. Which means that this life is all you have, and when you have turned 80, that begins to be a concern. How much longer will I be alive for?
The amazing fact is this: when you link up with God, your purpose will become established. The Bible helps us. For example James says in his epistle: “How do you know what is going to happen tomorrow? For the length of your lives is as uncertain as the morning fog—now you see it; soon it is gone”. (James 4:14 TLB).
Irrespective of what your perspective is, the unseen realm is the greatest realm. The spiritual realm is the greatest. Let me tell you why: the Bible tells us that God is spirit. You can’t see God, you can’t touch God, you can’t paint or describe God with language—God is spirit.
Just because you can’t touch him or see him, it doesn’t mean he’s not great. He is the greatest reality of all; he is the prime mover and cause of everything that is and ever has been and will be. What’s more, you have a spirit—for God has created you. You can’t see it beneath the layer of skin; you can’t pinpoint it in any particular human biological organ, but nevertheless you have it. God has given it to you. It is the part of you that will live on after your body dies. What’s more, not only is God a spirit, and you’re a spirit, but there is a whole world and universe of spirits.
Helen Keller once said life is either a bold adventure or nothing at all. And I have a feeling she was correct. Boredom and restlessness is part of life today. When we discover Jesus Christ as our own personal Saviour, life takes on a new meaning and purpose—and eternity is thrown in as well.
I like quotes from Rick Warren, because they make sense. And he wrote this:
Your heart may be crowded with good things, work or sports or hobbies, but they were never designed to take first place in your heart. In fact, you can be serving God and working for God and still miss God. Even good things do not have the power to hold your life together when the heat is on. And that’s why your life starts falling apart.