I love the farside comics by Larson. My favorite one shows an upright vacuum cleaner sitting on a path in the middle of the woods. In the foreground you can see eyes of various woodland creatures staring with great ill intent upon the vacuum. The caption reads “Nature hates a vacuum.”
No one likes a vacuum…a space entirely devoid of matter, emptiness, nothingness, vacant. We prove that daily by being sure to keep ourselves occupied with innumerable tasks, work, entertainment, hobbies, family and friends. We are afraid of emptiness, being alone. As we age, we discover that our career, interests, things, family, friends and wealth don’t fill us like they used to. As in Larson’s comic we are the woodland animals leering at the vacuum and loathing it.
If you are mid age like me you know what I am talking about. You are still young but you are closer to being older than you want to admit. You see childhood friends with changed faces and the reality hits home. Although there is much life left, you begin to wonder what you did with the first half. Does this life consist only of the present? Is there something more, some purpose that holds it all together? I’m reminded of the lyrics written by Jakob Dylan of the Wallflowers:
Hey, come on try a little Nothing is forever There’s got to be something better than In the middle
Jakob’s song focuses on the cyclic procession of brokenness, unfulfilled existence, vanishing dreams and not being able to see one’s way forward. I want to tell you there is something better. There is hope, freedom and life for all who would ask. This is not a gimmick, but a life of fulfillment through Jesus who is the antithesis of brokenness, despair and death. Jesus came to give life and give it more abundantly.
You’ve read stuff like this before or have heard it now and again. You have blown it off or chalked it up to irrationality or uber spiritual mumbo jumbo. Yet, this time it is different, you are at a place in life now that the questions become louder and you are ready to receive. The scripture tells us: If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved. With this knowledge you can pray and ask Jesus to fill the vacuum, He will.