Posts Tagged ‘God-shaped vacuum’

PatrickSwayzeI was reading a revealing and intimate Rolling Stone magazine interview with TV star Don Johnson (Miami Vice, Nash Bridges) when one quote struck me hugely.

“I remember a seminal moment, standing on the back deck of my ranch in Aspen. I’m a big star, I’ve got all this s..t, airplanes, cars, boats, a stream running down by my house and I’m going ‘Wow, this is really f…ing amazing. Why am I so miserable?’ ”

Then I recalled something from The Time of my Life, the biography written by movie star Patrick Swayze (Dirty Dancing, Ghost) and his wife, Lisa, before his 2009 death from pancreatic cancer.

Looking back at the life-transforming success of 1987’s Dirty Dancing, Swazye wrote, “When the thing you’ve been fighting for is suddenly in your grasp, it’s all too easy to look around and say – is that all there is?”

What fascinates me about these quotes is both men achieved exactly what our world says is the pinnacle of success. International fame, good looks, adoring fans and endless financial riches were theirs. As if that was somehow inadequate, Johnson had all the women he ever needed and Swayze had a rich, life-long marriage.

DonJohnsonSo what’s the deal with these puzzling quotes? How could these men be thinking such crazy things when our culture insists they couldn’t possibly need anything more?

Let me venture to write that our culture is dead wrong. No matter who we are are or where life has taken us, we DO need more – even more than the love of a spouse and family.

Where am I going with this? Consider these words, written more than 300 years ago by Blaise Pascal:

“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.”

Think that’s just crazy talk from some dead guy who didn’t know much? Um, Pascal was a mathematician, a physicist, a philosopher, an inventor and a writer. According to Wikipedia, he invented the mechanical calculator, the hydraulic press and the syringe. So it might be time to revise that opinion.

Beyond Pascal’s resume, consider how, all these centuries later, people like Patrick Swayze and Don Johnson are continuing to prove him right.

So what about you…Do you figure more money, a promotion at work, a new house or a ‘significant other’ upgrade will make everything good? Maybe it’s time to seriously ponder what Pascal said. Post your thoughts below and let’s have a conversation.

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