A Message for Julian Barnes
Atheist Julian Barnes famously starts his book Nothing to Be Frightened Of with the words, “I don’t believe in God, but I miss him.”
There can be little doubt this is the angst Saint Augustine was speaking of when he said, “Thou hast made us for Thyself, and the heart of man is restless until it finds its rest in Thee.”
Blaise Pascal took it one step further when he wrote, “There is a God-shaped vacuum in the heart of every person, and cannot be filled by any created thing, but only be by God, made known through Jesus Christ.”
Asking Jesus to fill the vacuum in my restless heart easily ranks as the single best decision of my life, and there isn’t a close second.
But I’m not going to lie. Following Jesus has been hard. My friend Ken Moar and I often said in our weekly meetings over 32 years that if we could have found an easier way, we would’ve taken it. Yet like Peter said when asked by Jesus if he wanted to leave like the others, we always came back to the same conclusion, “Lord, to whom else shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” (John 6:68).
That’s why I repeatedly say my worst day with Jesus has been infinitely better than my best day without them.
If you can get a note to Julian Barnes, please tell him for me, “God misses you too.”