Almost ten years ago I was getting ready to marry my husband. To say I was ecstatic would be an understatement. I had been dreaming of this day ever since I was a little girl. I just knew it was going to be perfect and magical and once I became his wife, my life would be complete. He was certainly going to fulfill all my hopes and dreams, because after all, love has always been the most important thing in the world to me.
Imagine my surprise when once the wedding and honeymoon were over, regular life ensued. All the anticipation that had been building up over the past nine months had come to a head, and the day had come and gone. It really was a perfect day. Everything was beautiful and it was all I had ever hoped and dreamt it would be. But once it was all over, I found myself left wanting. Here I was, married to the man of my dreams, and somehow I still did not feel fully satisfied.
What is wrong with me? I thought to myself. I am the luckiest girl in the world. Why am I not running around and skipping for joy?
I had the mistaken belief that once we said ‘I do’, all of my other problems would go away.
You see, a few years prior to this I experienced the greatest heartbreak of my life. My heart was still in pieces at this point, as I was slowly walking through the healing process and allowing the Lord to patch me back together. But I was certain that my husband was the missing link. That he was going to fill me up. And when he didn’t - because how could he possibly do what only God can do? - I was disappointed.
Can you relate to me?
Perhaps it isn’t in a relationship. Maybe it’s a job? A move? Something you have been anticipating for so long, thinking that once it came to pass all the other junk in your life would dissipate. And then it happened, but you still don’t feel totally fulfilled?
Here’s the deal. In God’s original design for our earth, it was all fulfilling. However, once sin entered and the earth fell, it could no longer contain all we needed. It became a temporary place for us to stay until we were able to move on to our eternal home of glory.
"Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes." -James 4:14.
If this is true, and I believe it is, then nothing this earth has to offer can totally fulfill us. We can try all we want, desperately grabbing at anything that promises to satisfy. But at the end of the day, we will be left wanting.
This is a lesson I feel I have learned multiple times, on multiple occasions, and on a deeper level each time. It is such a natural thing to seek our fleshly desires. And although I know that the only answer to true fulfillment is Jesus, I still sometimes catch myself slipping into the trap of looking to my right and to my left, seeking hope in all the wrong places.
But while we have been given so many beautiful things to enjoy here on this earth - marriage being one of them - that can fill our cups in so many ways, none of these things can be the true answer to our hope. They may provide hope for some time, but something that does not exist outside of time cannot provide continuous happiness. It simply is not possible.
Eventually I came to learn that while I valued the gift of my marriage, my sweet husband could not possibly be the answer to all of my problems. The poor guy wasn’t built to withstand that kind of pressure. We humans only have so much to give until we eventually tire out or crack from underneath all the pressure.
But God, the creator of all things, the alpha and the omega, the one who exists outside of time, never grows weary. He never gets tired. And he is the same yesterday, today and forever (Heb 13:8). He has a hope and a joy that never runs out. When we take our cups to him to be filled, versus the people and things of this world, we will be met with a peace and satisfaction unlike any other.
We can be totally and completely fulfilled when we seek to the one true Source to fill us up.
"Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful." - Hebrews 10:23
"...but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." - Isaiah 40:31
“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” - Jeremiah 29:11
— Lauren Preusz