Experiencing the Transcendent

Our Florida home is about an hour and a half drive from Disney World. It’s a destination for many from the U.S. and also from around the world. Over 50 million make The Magic Kingdom, the happiest place on earth, their destination each year. It certainly is a great place to visit, but don’t expect your visit to be perfect. You’re dealing with Florida weather, which means it can be hot and muggy way beyond what’s comfortable, and depending on the time of year, can rain every afternoon. Be prepared for long lines and expensive food, too.

We’re always yearning to get away from the daily grind, wanting to experience something special, exciting, transcending the ordinary. That’s why we have such high hopes for a vacation, a wedding, a big party, a concert, a ball game, and the list goes on.

We yearn for a transcendent experience, but nothing seems to deliver completely. Special experiences may turn out special, pretty much as we planned, but not completely. We end up saying, or at least thinking, “It was great, but…” It’s not uncommon to reflect in the midst of a much anticipated experience, “Is this all there is?”

The search for a transcendent experience that will allow us to escape from the ordinariness of life or the pain of existence can lead to an abuse of alcohol, drugs, and sex (including pornography and explicit romance novels). They become an addiction to the pursuit of the transcendent that won’t be found going down any of these paths.

God, and God alone, is transcendent. He’s way beyond anything and everything that is or that we can imagine to be. We’ve been created by God to yearn for the transcendent, but that yearning can only be ultimately satisfied by God Himself.

It’s strange that we would ever find the study of God (called theology) to be boring or extended reflecting about Him to be uninteresting. Also strange is how our idea of an exciting heaven has more to do with enjoying our favorite activity there than experiencing God as never before. This certainly says a lot more about us than it does about God!

When we’re sick we often have a lack of appetite for foods that we normally find appealing, and certainly those that would be good for us. Could it be that our lack of spiritual health has resulted in a loss of a hunger for God? Perhaps a good prayer to pray would be something to the effect, “O, God, restore my soul to a healthier state so I’ll want my greatest satisfaction to be found in You.”

This world certainly has a lot of great experiences to be enjoyed, but they’re never going to be the ultimate transcendent experience. Only God can deliver that; only God is transcendent!

“Who is like the Lord our God, the One who sits enthroned on high, who stoops down to look on the heavens and the earth?” (Psalm 113:5-6)

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