Perhaps I am only optimistic. It could be that I see what is not actually there. I feel like young people are grasping for meaning. The lifeless religion of their parents or the empty post-modern mind has left them empty. Our hearts cry out for more. We know there must be something more. We live in reality and seek the perfect reality. The exploration of the spiritual is fed by that desire. The same push that drives a person to explore eastern mysticism or Islam, is the very desire for which Christianity was made to fill. Augustine in speaking to God stated, that his soul was restless until it found its rest in God.
This is a restless generation. Our culture's dominate philosophy has left an aching emptiness. Our hearts betray us, and we know deep down that there must be something more. All can not end in emptiness and futility. Our hearts were fashioned for far more. In all our struggles to conquer our environment and subdue the Earth, we have failed to subdue the human heart. These human hearts are pleading for meaning and purpose. This is what is meant by fields being white onto harvest. The human heart desires and was created for transcendence. That is a truth we feel in the deepest part of our souls. This longing for transcendence is the imprint of Creator upon creature. It is that portion of man, which so closely reflects the divine. Made in the image of the Ultimate Transcendence it is only natural that we should desire and live for nothing else. With an entire world desperately seeking "truth", how can we be used of God to draw others to the "Truth"?
The entirety of human existence is consumed with unreality. We ask as though we are concerned about total strangers hundreds of miles away, and yet overlook the hurting that we pass each and everyday. Perhaps, I am just a little harsh, but I can't make a stronger point. Authenticity is the desperate desire of each human interaction.
We must conceded that many may never accept the Truth. While they desperately desire transcendence, as we all do, they will forever find it difficult to submit themselves to something larger than themselves. This should not surprise us, because our first parents sinned in thinking themselves to be equal with God. We can not allow ourselves to be mired in warming the cold-hearted. For these we pray for and leave it to God. Even Christ taught that we shouldn't cast pearls before swine.
However, there are those for whom submission to any transcendence that brings hope of peace for their soul. There is but one peace which defies human logic. Submitting to any other hope of transcendence, becomes but another empty promise.
We ought to be honest with ourselves. Why is it that with expanding spiritualism, that we seem to be losing ground. Why is that people attempt to find others, what has been long entrusted to the church? How can we be used of God, in this time of spiritual exploration, to draw men to Him.
First, we must accept God's providence. At times of His choosing, and His prerogative He has hardened men's hearts. We can not always know why He acts in such a manner at any particular time, but we trust in his objective. He acts in His time, and prerogative that His name might be glorified.
Truthfully, we have not been given these burdens to carry. While we ought to have burden for the lost. We ought to have love for our fellow-man. Their salvation is a matter for which God is the only authority. We are called to faithfulness. Faithfulness is our response to God, but our faithfulness is also God's gift through us to the world. Our faithfulness is less about what we don't do, and so much more about what we do. Do we treat each other as being made in the image of our Creator? Do we live open handedly, knowing that we never truly own anything? Do we seek justice for the oppressed, and healing for the hurting? When we spend too much time worried about what we ought not to do, then we can lose sight of all that we ought to do. The world will survive without another teetotalist. America can survive without another person who doesn't listen to secular music or dance. America is not dying because of these types of things that we continue to do. America and American Christianity is threatened because there are hearts hurting with no one to touch them. There are widows and orphans in desperate need of protection. There are injustices that we would rather not talk about.
We have an active faith. We have boiled it down to a simple prayer, but it is so much more than that. Sola Gracia, yes, so true, but faith without words is dead. Service, sacrifice, and discipline are the outward signs of an inner reality. When broken, naked and standing before our perfect Creator, we find a grace without explanation. Acceptance that can find no logic. We are filled to overflowing with a thankfulness that permeates our entire being. We serve, sacrifice, and discipline ourselves, not in hopes of pleasing God, but because our souls are so consumed with gratefulness that we can't restrain the urge to serve, sacrifice, or discipline ourselves. '
Do you wish others to trust Christ? Live each day with this abandon. Live each day with the immense gratitude of one who had declared civil war against the one and only ruler of the universe, having deserved nothing but death, and yet have found a grace for which no words could ever explain. If this were what animated our lives, then others will desire nothing more than the same.