Blaise Pascal, a noted French mathematician, physicist, inventor, writer, and theologian, said, “There was once in man a true happiness of which there now remains to him only; the mark and empty trace, which he in vain tries to fill from all his surroundings, seeking from things absent the help he does not obtain in things present? But these are all inadequate, because the infinite abyss can only be filled by an infinite and immutable object, that is to say, only by God Himself.” In short, there is a God-shaped hole in all of us. We try in futility to fill this hole with lesser things in hopes it will satisfy a deeper craving. These lesser things are called idols. They can never fulfill what only God can satisfy.
John D. Rockefeller was asked, “How much money does it take to satisfy a man?” Rockefeller replied, “Just a little bit more than he has.” Money falsely promises many things that many people find desirable—security, comfort, and status to name a few. The problem is there is seemingly never enough money to fulfill our desires. Often, where money increases, so do expenses, responsibilities, and even unintended problems. When money, or anything for that matter, is elevated to an ultimate status in our lives, we create an idol that ends up mastering us. Money can never satisfy what we can only find in God.
The Westminster Shorter Catechism asks the question, “What is the chief end of man? Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy him forever.”
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