BY STEVE DUNN
My teenage years were lived out in the Sixties. It was a highly skeptical age and often quite hostile to faith. In fact, many persons I knew in those days called themselves atheists or they bought into the philosophical position of one Karl Marx who declared “Religion is the opiate of the people.” Persons who had a faith, especially if it carried a strong affirmation of the reality of the supernatural, were considered ignorant, naive, or perhaps even dangerous. In the academic world it was a badge of honor to deny that humanity had a spiritual side. The spiritual side was considered an impediment or an opponent of becoming fully enlightened and fully human.
Yet as humanity has turned on the hinge of history and moved beyond the narrow framework of the Twentieth Century, we have once again accepted the truth found in the New Testament that healthy humanity acknowledges its spiritual nature.
“Oh, I am a spiritual person” is a proud claim by so many; including those of the emerging teenage generations.
Spiritual is not synonymous with Christian, but it is a common ground for once again introducing people to the “Truth that sets us free.”
Blaise Pascal wrote in the 17th century: “There is a God shaped vacuum in the heart of every man which cannot be filled by any created thing, but only by God, the Creator, made known through Jesus.”
Jesus Christ declared in the first century, “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled.”
In this photo is a friend of mine, Austin Young. In fact, I baptized him a couple of years ago. A young man with great leadership skills, athletic gifts, a heart of deep compassion and a propensity to action. But at the heart of his life always seemed to be a hunger for a right-relationship with God that drove his decisions and actions.
Young men like Austin have their ups and downs, their ebbs and flows, their close walks and even their falling always. But once they have tasted of what God has to offer, they always seem to return to that anchor of personal relationship with Christ.
Easter People are hungry people.
They hunger for a confident closeness to God.
They hunger to embody the love spoken of the Bible.
They hunger to make a difference in their world.
They hunger for justice and mercy to prevail.
They hunger for grace to continue its amazing work.
They hunger to be like Jesus.
So just what are you hungering for these days?