There are three things that every human being yearns for.
Every single person, regardless of whether they are Christians or Buddhists or Muslims or atheists, spends their whole life searching for these three things. We will spend countless hours working for them. We will travel across the world for them. We will spend all our money on them. Some people might even kill for them.
Can you guess what they are?
Take a second to make a mental list in your head.
Okay here are the answers (according to what I learnt at RCIA haha):
We all want to love and to be loved. Even the most selfish, bitter and angry person in the world wants to be loved. That’s why we start families and make friends and join communities.
That’s why so many people are addicted to Facebook Likes and pornography. That’s why we work like crazy to become rich because we believe that it will buy us love.
Even though we’re surrounded by lies and illusions, we have a strong innate desire to find out the objective truth about ourselves and the world we live in.
That’s why we engage in scientific research and read books and watch documentaries. That’s why so many people become lawyers and researchers and journalists.
That’s also why so many people are drawn to religion – to answer the fundamental question: Is there a God? Is there a sense to this life and all of this chaos around us?
This last one is a little hard to guess, but deep down inside, we’re also searching for beauty.
That’s why we’re drawn to art and music and poetry and dance. That’s why we’re driven to create works of art – to express the beauty in our hearts and in our imagination.
That’s why we travel across the world to experience a magnificent cathedral or gaze at a beautiful mountain landscape.
Where Does That Lead Us?
Now, pop quiz: Let’s say we had all the resources and all the answers in the world. Let’s say that we’ve spent our life searching for love and truth and beauty in their purest and ultimate forms. Where would that eventually lead us to?
The answer: God.
For God is the Ultimate Love, the Ultimate Truth, and the Ultimate Beauty. Nothing else in this world could ever fulfil these deep longings besides the One True God.
Why do you think we long for these things in the first place? Why aren’t we like a dog or a monkey, who just gets by surviving and eating and reproducing?
We desire for love and truth and beauty because God put those desires within us. Unlike the animals, we were made in His image. And like an artist, God put a little bit of Himself within us.
The Treasure That Money Can’t Buy
I was reflecting on this concept when I was reading today’s Gospel on the treasure hidden in the field:
“The kingdom of heaven is like treasure hidden in a field, which a man found and covered up; then in his joy he goes and sells all that he has and buys that field.”
I used to wonder: How do we accept that God is our Treasure? What kind of Treasure is this, and how does it compare to something immediate and concrete, like money or status?
Yet, thousands of martyrs have endured torture and given up their lives for this Treasure. Our priests and religious have renounced everything they had to follow Christ. Tens of thousands of people today still risk their lives and persecution to celebrate Mass.
If this Treasure is just an illusion, then these people are probably the stupidest people in the world. Why would you sacrifice so much for something that isn’t real?
But maybe there really IS something here.
If we realise that this Treasure is the Ultimate Love, the Ultimate Truth and the Ultimate Beauty that we are all yearning for, then these sacrifices start to make sense.
Lord, grant us the wisdom to sacrifice our worldly treasures in exchange for You: the real Treasure of our hearts. Amen!
Image credit: talkingplant