Do you ever feel off balance, hollow? I know I do. These feelings, for me, are often accompanied by a feeling of answers missed. We humans spend much of our time struggling with the questions “Who am I?” and “What is my purpose?” Although this struggle colors the reality of each and every generation, there is no evidence, thus far, that these questions have been answered in a way that lays them to rest. Why? I think the following quote by C. S. Lewis will provide a profound clue.
You do not have a soul.
You are a soul.
You have a body.
Okay, based on the C. S. Lewis quote, my thinking has been a little upside down. I’m not a human body with a soul; I’m a soul with a body. Although God created an incomparable, miraculous human body for me, it is, basically, a car that my soul drives. No soul equals no animation.
Wow! I can see where the problems begin. My human body swims in the waters of a toxic, greed and power driven world and is subject to all its seductive but destructive charms. Driven by a child-like focus on getting its way, this body continually seeks a way to switch to autopilot so that the soul can’t stop it from playing all the fun games this very material realm offers. The soul, on the other hand, focuses on guiding the body/mind to an awareness that its God-given purpose is to let the love and light of God shine through it to transform the human world. That combination definitely has the makings of an epic conflict…a classic battle between the dark and the light. This blend of body and soul is so volatile that it ignited almost immediately. In fact, it began in the Garden of Eden with the snake and the apple.
There’s still a piece that I am missing somewhere. Let me walk this path one step at a time. God sends us to this earth as spiritual beings on a human journey. Our purpose is to grow to be the best that we can be, and we come equipped with everything we need to fulfill that purpose. Well, that seems fairly straightforward and simple…so far. Next, we have the choice between the light and the dark. Again, this seems a brilliant and loving plan so that we can grow to be everything God created us to be. So what is creating the feelings that I’m missing something?
Suddenly, it dawns on me. I know! The critical clue is the word “choice”! God gave us free will, the power to choose between right or wrong and the power to choose between God and the world. THAT’S THE PROBLEM – not God’s plan for us but rather the choices we make of our own free will.
Just as the most beautiful Waterford crystal lamp is created to shine and illuminate the space it occupies, we were created to shine so that our light can transform the world as well as ourselves. And like the lamp, we are simply beautiful, but dark, vessels incapable of fulfilling our purpose unless connected to a power source.
Close your eyes. Imagine you are standing on one of God’s glorious, pristine hillsides, currently dark and devoid of life. You stand as a miraculous, but empty, vessel, full of promise that you can feel but never realize. Suddenly, a glorious spot of heavenly light appears in the firmament. You raise your eyes and your hands to the light and… CONNECT TO THE SOURCE OF ALL. The love and light of God flows through you in beautiful and powerful waves. You feel the power of perfect love coursing through you, infusing you with its power and peace. You look around the hillside and see other humans choosing the light. The hillside begins to shine with the reflected light of God’s love and your choice to live for Him. You now know what it means to “shine as children do”. You will never forget, and neither you nor the world will ever be the same.