This is not a trite saying, and indeed is worthy of universal acceptance: People need the Lord.
“Who is the Lord?” would be a common and sane question from many. The sense that we are needy, dependent beings would be accepted by most human beings on some level. Although there is the philosophy that it is best if people seek to make it on their own, that if everyone would do that as they are able, the world would be a better place. That is taking personal responsibility seriously, but it is failing to take into account the directive that we’re to love our neighbor as ourselves (or, as one who is like ourselves).
Life is full of mystery. We can insist that only what is verifiable through our senses and tested by reason is viable. Yet we are left with questions we can’t honestly answer by those means. We’re left only with our own conjectures or opinion about such. A love which exists for the good of others will make little or no sense unless it can be explained in some biological, naturalistic terms.
We humans are not meant to live in isolation. We are social beings, or most of us do best in relationship with others. Yes, some of us like our space and time alone, and I think I’m one of them. But we are at a loss when we are cut off from everyone. The punishment of solitary confinement points to this as a maxim for most of us.
People the world over have been inclined to reach out to some being, something which is over them, a higher power, often for superstitious, or pragmatic reasons. Though oftentimes as well due to an ideology which is somehow to explain or make a difference in the world, in their world, for good as they understand it.
There are hints of the good and the bad. Of a creator or creators, something or someone which provides a general explanation for everything.
Enter Jesus. Jesus is the one who gives the answer which in the end will bring the world to its feet, yes up from the grave. Jesus is the one in and through whom there is a hope which will put the world out of its misery not by destruction, but by “putting it to rights” (as N.T. Wright expresses it), making all things new.
And this promise for the world includes each and every individual in the world. We all need something more than all the good we have. And that something is in terms of God’s will in Jesus, and what Jesus brings in that will for us and for the world. And it is in terms of being saved to become part of the solution to the problem for the world in and through Jesus.
Yes, it is personal and individual, as well as collective and with reference to all things. In fact all things, everything, along with every person is meant to be remade, made new, according to the intent of God in Jesus.
Jesus and all that comes from him found in scripture is the reason for my life, for what I believe is truly human and good, and the fulfillment of that. That’s not to say that people can’t enjoy a good measure of these things apart from Jesus, but it is to say that we can’t be heading to the fulfillment of these things, which includes getting rid of all that is in the way of that, except through Jesus.
On October 22, 1973 I asked God to take over my life, committing my life to God through Jesus’ death for my sins. And from that day to this, it’s never been the same. Yes, I’ve had my bumps, bruises, falls and failures along the way. Yes, I’ve hardly been able to see the way at times. But the Lord has been present through it all, and only he keeps me going to this day. And I want to know him much more. Along with others in him for the world.