06 September 2007

Ever Wonder "There's Gotta Be More To Life Than This"?

So I was at the gym today, and the song "I Don't Wanna Be" by Gavin Degraw (the video, actually) started on the gym's many TVs. I like the song, the few years old that it is, but today the words occurred to me in a new way:

I don't want to be anything other than what I've been trying to be lately
All I have to do is think of me and I have peace of mind
I'm tired of looking 'round rooms
Wondering what I've got to do or who I'm supposed to be
I don't want to be anything other than me

The reason I noticed the words is because I paused the song on my Shuffle to watch the video. I was listening to Stacy Orrico's "There's Gotta Be More To Life":

I've got it all but I feel so deprived
I go up, I come down, and I'm emptier inside
Tell me: what is this thing that I feel like I'm missing?
And why can't I let it go?

There's gotta be more to life
than chasin' down every temporary high to satisfy me
'Cause the more that I trip around thinking there must be more to life
Well there's life, but I'm sure there's gotta be more (I'm wanting more)

I've got the time and I'm wasting it slowly
Here in this moment I'm half way out the door
Onto the next thing, I'm searching
For something that's missing
There's gotta be more . . . .

Now, you may not know that Staci Orrico is a Christian, so this song is really her way of inviting people out there who are "tired of looking round rooms wondering what I've got to do or who I'm supposed to be" to search for true meaning in life other than "what I've been trying to be lately."

And since we're using music here to explain some tough issues (funny how music has a power to do that sort of thing better than straight out statements), allow me to explain what I believe is true life and meaning available for each person. This comes from the Newsboys' remake of a classic hymn "In Christ Alone":

No guilt in life, no fear in death -
This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry, to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from his hand
'Till he returns or calls me home -
Here in the power of Christ I stand

And why I continue to be a Christian, as expressed in Hillsong's "Made Me Glad":

You have made me glad, and I'll say of the Lord:
You are my shield, my strength, my portion, deliverer,
My shelter, strong tower,
My very present help in time of need

I don't want to be "what I've been trying to be lately" because I screw it up too often. I do want to be what God wants to make of me: gentle, self-controlled, peaceable, strong, gracious, understanding, loving, encouraging, brave, full of hope, not afraid of death, not afraid of life, one who lifts others up, a fantastic husband, brother, son, friend, father (some day!), and slowly becoming all around better than I was at this time last year.

He can make this of you, too. That's the "good news" about Jesus. We don't have to try to get into Heaven on our own efforts; Jesus has done the effort and has paid the penalty we deserve. Paul, one of the writers of the New Testament, says it this way:

"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he [or she] is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himselft through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, that God was reconciling the world to himself in Christ, not counting men's sins against them. . . . We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God."

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