Lives of Quiet Desperation

Henry-David-ThoreauMy father, on more than one occasion, has referenced this quotation in various discussions on purpose and meaning: “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation“. I’ve been thinking about that lately. So, I Googled the phrase this evening and came across this enlightening write up, entitled Quiet Desperation, on the words, the man behind them, and where those thoughts can lead, either for good or for ill. Here’s an excerpt to give you a taste,

One night very early on in a life, a young boy lay back on the rocky New England soil, contemplating the heavens,  “looking through the stars to see if I could see God behind them.” This quest became one of the primary motivators of his life — one might say he never stopped looking into nature for the ultimate truth.

But what did Henry David Thoreau mean by his famous observation, “Most men lead lives of quiet desperation and go to the grave with the song still in them”?

You may have seen those Facebook/Twitter/Instagram memes, the ones that say something to the effect of “Everyone you meet is battling inner demons that you known nothing about.” It’s so true. As much as we want to be open and free with our feelings and emotions with friends and family there are some things too deep, too subtle, too sensitive, to speak openly about. I think of the late Robin Williams. A man of laughter but a man of surprising inner turmoil to the point of ultimate desperation. If you don’t have a friend you can talk to, know that you have a friend in Jesus.

For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.

John 3:16,17

Soli Deo gloria

Most people believe what they hear most

Readers will know I talk about creation and evolution quite a bit. I also read Slashdot.org, which is populated by large numbers of well educated individuals from which, it appears, most do not have a Christian faith or up-bringing. I’ve come to realize something in my back-and-forths on slashdot about creation and evolution: People believe what they hear most.

Readers will know I talk about creation and evolution quite a bit. I also read Slashdot, which is populated by large numbers of well educated individuals from which, it appears, most do not have a Christian faith or up-bringing. I’ve come to realize something in my back-and-forths on slashdot about creation and evolution: People believe what they hear most.

Evolution gets a huge amount of media coverage. It’s what everybody has been hearing about in classrooms, books, television, radio, music and movies for decades. Consider that one hundred to two hundred years ago, children were being brought up on the Genesis account of creation. They heard it at home. They heard it in school. They heard it in books. They heard it in church. You get the picture.  Atheists have long claimed Christians are unthinking believers – believing only what they have heard. And, you know, they’re probably right in a lot of cases, but, as it turns out, the shoe is on the other foot and what do we see? We see the exact same behaviour.

For the past hundred years or so, Christian families and up-bringings have been less and less the norm, evolution has been taught in our schools, it is taught in our books, movies, music, television, radio and in a myriad of other content. And look what has come of this? Most people doubt, at the very least, the Genesis creation account and, more than likely, just simply believe evolution.

The circle has come full turn and this is the final analysis: People believe what they hear most.

Don’t be one of those people. Read contrarian content. That’s right, read about evolution, read about scientology, read about Buddha, read the Qur’an.

God’s Word is not brittle, it will not fail you at the first mention of controversy. God made us after his own image, intelligent, made to reason and to comprehend. God is not scared that you will find the truth if you read Richard Dawkins or some evolution book. Christianity and its apologetics are stronger and more secure than they’ve ever been, and their information is quicker to access than ever before.

Remember your Christian guides, however, because you are a fallible, insecure human, just like all of us. Remember to pray, read your bible, maintain strong Christian friends, and remember resources like Creation.com.

Go forth, then, in the light and in the strength of the solid foundation of God’s Word and believe not what you hear most but believe instead what is true.