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Jun 06

What if God doesn’t exist?

Think about it for a moment. What if God doesn’t exist? How would you feel? How would your life change?

A Cistercian abbot – a type of Catholic monk who practices living in solitude and silence – was asked this very question during an interview on Italian television. The abbot’s answer? “Holiness, silence and sacrifice are beautiful in themselves, even without promise of reward. I still will have used my life well.”

At first glance this is a pretty good answer! I even found myself nodding in agreement. However something was off, something just didn’t seem quite right… What does the Bible say? If you were to ask Paul the same question, what would he say? “If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are to be pitied more than all men” (1 Cor 15:19).

Let’s go over that again – what if God doesn’t exist? The abbot’s answer? “It was a good and noble life anyway.” Paul’s? “Pity me, for it was all for nothing.” Their answers couldn’t be any more different.

Paul lived a life that simply did not make sense without Jesus. He was put in prison frequently, flogged by whips and rods, stoned, shipwrecked, faced death, often left cold, hungry, thirsty, sleepless and naked. Why? All because of Jesus. As a disciple of Christ, he lived a life of sacrifice and suffering in seeking to bring the lost back to God. Paul’s life only makes sense because of Jesus. And if Jesus isn’t God? Then Paul’s life of mission was all for nothing, he should be pitied and rightly so!

So think about it for a moment. What if God doesn’t exist? How would you feel? How would your life change? Are you living a life that only makes sense because of Jesus?

Like Paul we are saved in Jesus; and like Paul we are to follow Jesus. Where’s Jesus going? To seek and save the lost. Now how that looks will be different for all of us – but make no mistake, as His disciples this is what we’re called to do. We are to live each and every day a life that only makes sense because of Jesus. We are to be different in such a way that it makes the world ask, “Why?” and draws them closer to God.

We are to love, be kind, merciful and forgive in such a way that only makes sense because Jesus poured all these things on us first.

We are to be content and thankful in the midst of trials, sufferings and even our own failures in such a way that only makes sense because our joy and self-worth is found in Jesus.

We are to care for the needy, provide for the widow and the orphan and fight for justice for the oppressed in such a way that only makes sense because we are Jesus’ hands and feet.

We are to joyfully serve and sacrifice our time, our finances and our lives in such a way that only makes sense because making Jesus known is worth more than all the world.

And if God doesn’t exist? Then let us be pitied.

Alex Bui