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Unfulfilled Expectations  

It's the most impressive mountain range in the state of Illinois.

You say there are no mountain ranges in the Land of Lincoln? Okay. So maybe I've exaggerated the peaks of rust that jut skyward near Chicago's Kedzie Avenue. Upon closer examination, the man-made mounds of steel reveal surprisingly recognizable chunks of everyday stuff.

Crane-mounted magnets and hydraulic claws paw at the piles, sorting and stacking washing machines, cars, refrigerators, dryers, freezers, and more. Though I’m glad for the recycling, I’m a bit sad for myself—and you.

In those piles, I see the investment of so many false hopes, not to mention big dollars. We were just sure the rush of owning that new car would translate into a lasting satisfaction of knowing we’d finally joined the cool kids.  Somehow it didn’t. And that new refrigerator—the one with the TV monitor built into the door—was going to revolutionize our grocery shopping, saving us time and money. Somehow it didn’t.

There it all stands, a pricey pinnacle of unfulfilled expectations ready to be recycled.

These mountains of mangled machinery haunt me with a solitary question. Why do we place hope—any hope—in a man-made thing? In the long history of this world, has there ever been one single manufactured thing that brought lasting peace? Or enduring hope? Or endless joy? 

Possessions can certainly streamline our work, save time, or bring happy distractions and momentary pleasure. But as our things wear out or rust out, their exaggerated offers of fulfillment deteriorate, as well.

Jesus never said, "Come to your stuff, and you will find rest." But He did say, "Come to me, all you who are weary and heavy-laden—and I will give you rest." 

Refreshing—but never recycled—Truth.  That’s Jesus, our only lasting satisfaction. 

 

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Jon GaugerJon Gauger

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