With all the travel that I do across different countries and cities, I often get the chance to meet the most unique people. A while ago a trip to England afforded me the opportunity to sit next to a Hasidic Jew. He was returning to England from an orthodox college in New York. Pretty quickly our conversation turned into a discussion about religion (it probably didn’t help that I pulled out Derek Prince’s book on prayer and fasting…)
Our conversation began with a dialogue about some of the differences regarding Judaism and what I called the “Jesus” religion. As he realized that I was not your average “know-nothing-about-your-bible” western Christian he began to ask some deeper questions. You want to know what we spent close to 40 minutes talking about?
Why God chose to create the earth.
This young Hasidic Jew was confounded as to why he existed and he admitted that he would probably spend the rest of his life trying to figure that out. He was frustrated because he could not explain why God created him. He knew the Jewish race was chosen by God but had no answer as to why. We talked about the time continuum and where God existed in relation to that. We discussed if God knew the future or not and if so then why did he still allow certain things to happen (the freedom of choice argument). As the conversation progressed I began to realize that all this young Jewish boy had was more and more questions and no answers. He said you had to be very smart to understand the writings of the Rabbis and that it takes a long time to understand.
And that was where our conversation changed. To me, it is very simple.
Why do we exist? Because God desires fellowship. Did he have fellowship before us? Was he complete before us? Yes. Then why create us? Because He wanted to. When I got married, my wife and I were completely happy to just live with the two of us in the house and enjoy each others company. We didn’t have children because we were bored or felt incomplete, we had children because we desired to extend our family and bring others into the fellowship that we enjoyed.
We exist to enjoy Him and be enjoyed by Him. When we start to believe that, we can enter into relationship with Him that goes beyond religion and questions and wonderings. The answer is simple – He actually likes us.
If your view of God is a distant God who rules the earth from afar and is focused on rules and regulations then you will find it difficult to believe in a God that could create children simply because He wants to. It is especially hard when you know that children make a lot of mess, tend to be disobedient and cry a lot. Children are not clean and do not follow rules (mostly). But we love them just the same.
It really is that simple. “But Jesus said, “Let the children alone, and do not hinder them from coming to Me; for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”” Matt. 19.14
The kingdom of heaven does not belong only to the educated rabbis, or the rule keepers and certainly not the perfect (as we see perfect to be). It belongs to the little children. Next time you wonder why you exist, tell yourself it’s because God likes you and wants to be in relationship with you. That should change the outlook of your day.