This I Believe…
I can honestly say that I am more joyful now than any other point in my life. But there is just one problem, when I think about my generation- my mind’s eye squints. I cringe to think of all the false pleasures this world is bombarding at me and my fellow teenagers. This generation’s heart is like a puzzle, and the middle piece that holds it all together is missing. Different influences in this world are trying to let my generation think that a variety of things can fill that hole: alcohol, drugs, gluttonous food, entertainment, popularity, serious relationships, sex, video-games, money, power, etc… and there is just one thing all of the above have in common, restrictions. Cigarettes can only take a person as far as the chemicals can, sex can only take people as far as their bodies can, money and material things can only take us as far as our imagination allows; and after that, what’s the point? After all is said and done, what did it accomplish?
Some may falsely think that I am against happiness; my motto is not, “If it feels good, it’s bad.” I simply don’t need any of that listed stuff to make me who I am. The pieces that make me up are of the negative included with the positive; it is when the two are put together that you get something electrifying. A friend once told me that, “The only difference between dumb people and smart people is that smart people learn from errors and mistakes.” I adored that saying so much, I told another friend. That friend pondered about it for a few seconds, and added, “Yes, but a wise person learns from other’s errors and mistakes.” So it is through learning from my past, others’ histories, and looking forward to the future that I have been able to be joyful.
People sometimes ask me, “Why should I look forward to the future? What’s so great about unseen things yet to come?” I think that is a great question. Every time I hear something like that, the lyrics of a song by Delirious? comes to mind: “Forty-million babies lost in God’s great orphanage. It’s a modern day genocide and a modern day disgrace. If this is a human right, then why aren’t we free? The only freedom we have is in a man nailed to a tree.” What I interpret that to mean is that we have been given the right to do whatever we want as human beings. But even still, hearts cry out every day for something more. And it is only through a perfect sacrifice that I have been able to be as joyful as I am. In my life, I have been saved from enemies and from myself more times than I can count; not because there was an evolution in my situations, and it surely was not because of one man boasting his power. The sole reason I can say today that I am completely free from my past, all addictions, and depression is because of the joy I have through a pure man that let his life be persecuted- that I may have a free one. That is why I look forward to the future and do not fear unseen things, because if He can take care of the past, I know he’s got a great future planned for me.
As I said before, my generation is crying out for something more, but Jesus Christ has counted their tears and is knocking on their door with freedom in his hands. This, I believe.
If you enjoyed this essay, please consider making a tax-deductible contribution to This I Believe, Inc.