A few weeks ago, while sitting in church, I heard the words “salvation” and “saved” several times. And for the first time, I asked myself. What do we wish to be saved from? Of course, sin should be the obvious answer. But for some reason, I was caught up in another thought as I listened to several people comment on the lesson being taught, which was not about salvation.
Do we want to be saved from death, so we hope in a resurrection? Do we want to be saved from the everyday complications of life, so we hope in an unimaginable perfect heaven? Do we want to be saved from physical pain, so we hope in a perfect resurrected being that will not feel the sun on his back, the cold wind blow across his face or cancer kill? Do we want to be saved from finding purpose in this life, so we hope in a purpose given to us from God in heaven? Do we want to be saved from the constant drudgery of work to earn money and put food in our belly? Do we want to be saved so that we can live with family? All these questions made me ask one more, the final question, the question that to me has become a quest to answer. Is our desire for salvation really and truly simply motivated because of us wanting to be forgiven of our sins?
The day after church, on Memorial Day, I was reading an article about the history of Memorial Day and was feeling blessed to be living in this country in which I reside. To help contribute to the feeling of thankfulness, I listened to a song written and sung by Jason Isbell titled, “Relatively Easy.” Where some of the lyrics describe our lives here in the peaceful west compared to other people around the world. Jason writes, “And you should know compared to people on a global scale our kind has had it relatively easy. And here with you there’s always something to look forward to. My angry heart beats relatively easy.”
To connect to the two experiences (listen to the full song, see link below), I asked the question. Is life that full of hellish moments and trials that we wish to be saved from them? I for one have enjoyed life, enjoyed the sun, the wind, and hardships. But after asking the question I couldn’t help but think of refugees. How do refugees view salvation? And that final question, the question that to me has become a quest to answer popped back up in my head. Is our desire for salvation really and truly simply motivated because of us wanting to be forgiven of our sins? There must be more to salvation. I understand that some of the questions I have asked may seem selfish to many. But that final question, I think is a question worth looking over, one worth thinking about. Whether the physical, mental, or emotional problems and trials of this world are something from which we should want to be saved, may not matter. But surely, salvation from sin is not the only motivation for millions of people wanting to come unto Christ.