January 21, 2019 - The Detour

Updated: Mar 9, 2019

For a few nights, a local AM radio station in Midwest flyover country ran a contest. Folks would come to the studio and the contestant who sounded the most like country singer Johnny Cash would win 100 dollars and a plaque attesting to the talent thereof. The contest was a promo for the town’s truck dealer trying to get rid of last year’s models.

A few area residents with nothing better to do trickled in, mostly for the fun and free beer. It was kind of America Idol, the local yokel version. Yet each night, amid the revelry, a middle-aged man, Louie, who worked in the paper mill along the river, would come in and sing, off key and out of tune, the same few stanzas of “Folsom Prison Blues.” On the night the winner was announced, the DJ, if for no other reason than Louie’s tenacity, awarded him the coveted prize. Afterwards, beaming before a reporter for the Gazette, Louie--when asked why he worked so hard to win--gazed proudly at his reward.


“I guess,” He said, “I just wanted to do something to give my life meaning, that’s all.”


Might sound silly—but in the end, how much sillier it this than may other ways people try to find meaning in an existence that we are told is, ultimately, meaningless? If our universe, our planet, our lives are the result of a series of unintentional, unplanned, unforeseen events, you know, accidents—then what meaning does anything we do have?


What a contrast to the biblical worldview, in which we are the results of the purposeful action a loving Creator who made us in His image with the express purpose of giving us eternal life in a perfect world. Due to sin, His intentions have taken a bit of a detour, yes, but thanks to Jesus, His incarnation, life, death, High Priestly ministry, and return—God’s ultimate plan will be realized. Or, as Paul wrote: “Now when all things are made subject to Him, then the Son Himself will also be subject to Him who put all things under Him, that God may be all in all.”


Now that’s something live for.

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