January 29, 2010
The Point of All LivingI love watching a herd of horses grazing in an open pasture, or running free across the wide, sage-covered plateaus in Montana. I love hiking in the high country when the wildflowers are blooming—the purple lupine and the Indian paintbrush when it’s turning magenta. I love thunder clouds, massive ones. My family loves to sit outside on summer nights and watch the lightning, hear the thunder as a storm rolls in across Colorado. I love water, too—the ocean, streams, lakes, rivers, waterfalls, rain. I love jumping off high rocks into lakes with my boys. I love old barns, windmills, the West. I love vineyards. I love it when Stasi is loving something, love watching her delight. I love my boys. I love God.
Everything you love is what makes a life worth living. Take a moment, set down the book, and make a list of all the things you love. Don’t edit yourself; don’t worry about prioritizing or anything of that sort. Simply think of all the things you love. Whether it’s the people in your life or the things that bring you joy or the places that are dear to you or your God, you could not love them if you did not have a heart. Loving requires a heart alive and awake and free. A life filled with loving is a life most like the one that God lives, which is life as it was meant to be (Eph. 5:1–2).
Of all the things that are required of us in this life, which is the most important? What is the real point of our existence? Jesus was confronted with the question point-blank one day, and he boiled it all down to two things: loving God and loving others. Do this, he said, and you will find the purpose of your life. Everything else will fall into place. Somewhere down inside we know it’s true; we know love is the point. We know if we could truly love, and be loved, and never lose love, we would finally be happy. And is it even possible to love without your heart?
(Waking the Dead; 47-48)