I received the following email & letter from Jonathan. He's a student in our high school ministry, a long-time Gracer, and a backstage volunteer during our weekend services. He emailed me last Wednesday, after last weekend's topic, "Why do I exist?"
Here's his email:
- "Re: Meaning of Life Essay. On Monday, my CA teacher assigned to us an essay about our thoughts on the meaning of life. Just wanted you to show you what I wrote, because I was really able to take the notes I took from your message the day before and turn them into an essay. So, thanks a lot for both the easy A and a chance to share the message of Christ with my class."
Here's his paper:
- "Meaning of Life. My belief and love for Christ has shaped my entire life and all my ideals. It is no surprise then that my ideas about the meaning of life come from a Christian viewpoint. I firmly believe that any search for the meaning of life outside of God is meaningless and futile. In the 3rd century Solomon decided to tackle to very question I am now attempting to answer. Solomon was the wisest, richest, and most powerful man in the world. His wisdom was only surpassed by Jesus Christ himself and his riches have never been matched, even by the likes of Alexander the Great and John Rockefeller. He was the absolute ruler over the powerful nation of Israel which was recently united. Though he seemed to live the life that all would envy, Solomon described in Ecclesiastes that none of these worldly possessions brought him true meaning and fulfillment. In chapter 1, verse 14 he writes, “I have seen all the works that are done under the sun; and indeed, all is vanity and grasping for the wind.” He came to this conclusion by testing many other theories around the meaning of life. He tried filling his life with nothing but happiness and spent all his time striving for joy, but he found that mirth was nothing but vanity. He later used his riches to buy all his heart’s desires, but found that this was wholly unfulfilling. He even tried to find his purpose in finding a wife and loving her, but found this also left something more to be desire. In the final two verses, Solomon comes to his conclusion. He states simply, “Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is man’s all.” I wholly agree with him. The purpose of life is to be like Jesus, be an extension of Jesus, and praise Jesus. For me, this is my all."
Thanks, Jonathan, for letting me post it!