WiW: A quest for Joy

The Week in Words

There’s a pang in my heart, a rumbling in my gut, a nagging in my mind.

Something in my soul says this can’t be all there is.

Somewhere deep inside, I have an insatiable, unquenchable thirst.

I’m not sure exactly what it signifies–but one thing is sure.

THIS will not satisfy.

Is this what Lewis spoke of when he talks of his quest for Joy?

“Even when he first experienced Joy as a child, Lewis recognized that the feeling was not mere nostalgia or love of nature. It was a desire, then, for what? Trying to answer that became a kind of personal grail quest for Jack, a quest he would recount first in his highly autobiographical allegory, The Pilgrim’s Regress, and again in his memoir, Surprised by Joy. Both books are organized around the search for Joy, trying and setting aside many false objects of “Sweet Desire,” until one finally comes to rest in humble recognition of the true Object one has been seeking since childhood.”
~David Downing in The Most Reluctant Convert

I can identify with Lewis’s grail, his quest to capture the elusive Joy.

I think we all can.

What was Solomon’s story but a search for Joy? Spending every resource at his disposal, seeking a Joy that none of his resources could give.

Money. Fame. Women. Wisdom. Work.

The same things I try to find meaning and purpose, Joy, in.

“Solomon had the resources to do whatever he wanted, which is exactly what he did. He gorged himself on pleasure and filled himself with wine. He poured himself into great architectural projects and bought hordes of slaves…He had money, sex, power, fame, a big house, and entertainment. He was a test case for human happiness.

If the things of the world could satisfy, then Solomon should have been the happiest man to have ever lived. And yet, after standing at the pinnacle of life and surveying all that he had accomplished and accumulated, he came to one conclusion: ‘All is vanity.’

In reality, we’re not that different from Solomon. We have our vision of what would make us happy, of what would finally give us satisfaction. And so we pursue our dreams…

And you know what? Sometimes dreams come true. We get married, have children, land the new job, buy the new house. But we’re not cured of our madness. One dream replaces another, and the circle of discontentment starts all over.”

~Stephen Altrogge in The Greener Grass Conspiracy

Joy, the elusive fulfillment of my inner longing.

The flavor I taste in a thousand things, but can only satiate in One.

“You will show me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of Joy;
At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.”
~Psalm 16:11

Don’t forget to take a look at Barbara H’s meme “The Week in Words”, where bloggers collect quotes they’ve read throughout the week.

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