Do you know that song “Satisfied” in the musical Hamilton that occurs about halfway through the first act? It’s sung by Angelica Schuyler, who is captivated by Alexander at the same time that her sister Eliza becomes totally smitten with him – at a party where they first all meet. It is a phenomenal song, and it’s worth listening to if you haven’t heard it. The lyrics depict how Angelica tries to reconcile the strong attraction she has to Alexander with his possible motives, family background and history, and her sister’s infatuation with him. And you can tell her heart is breaking even though her eyes are smiling when concludes the song with the closing line, “I will never be satisfied.”

Perhaps like everyone else who watches the musical and hears that song, I applied that theme to my life. Is it true, at least on some level? Yeah, I think so. Unfortunately.

When you’re growing up, you have all of these grand ambitions and storybook dreams that you’re working for, hoping for, praying for. They give you that faraway look in your eyes, and they add a spring to your step and a buoyancy to your heart because you’re just so positive they are the answer you’ve been looking for. And you’re convinced they will satisfy you in ways that nothing else heretofore has. I mean, that’s what you’ve been told, that’s what you’ve internalized based on everything you’ve seen and read and heard.

When you’re growing up, you have all of these grand ambitions and storybook dreams that you’re working for, hoping for, praying for. They give you that faraway look in your eyes, and they add a spring to your step and a buoyancy to your heart because you’re just so positive they are the answer you’ve been looking for.

But then when you achieve those goals and some of your dreams come true (and I sincerely hope they do), you are super thankful and really happy about them but still have a gnawing suspicion that something is missing. Whatever it was just…didn’t…complete you as you thought it would. As you thought it should.

I’ve scored the winning goal in a game. I’ve won competitions. I’ve gotten a degree. I’ve achieved a promotion. I’ve become well-known in my specialty area. I’ve fallen in love. I’ve had my first kiss. I’ve gotten married. I’ve enjoyed incredible sex. I’ve witnessed the birth of two of my children. I’ve been invited to the White House. I’ve summitted mountains. I’ve bought my own home. I’ve traveled the world.

And yes, I am super thankful and really happy about each and every one of those goals and dreams. Honestly, I’m so grateful, and I pray so hard that everyone I care about can share in the joys those experiences provide.

But they’re just not enough.

Maybe they would be for you, but I still feel like there is something more. Does this reveal that I am just I fundamentally flawed in my nature and outlook on life? That’s possible. But could it indicate that I’m on to something?

In Mere Christianity (one of the best books ever written), C. S. Lewis opines:

“The Christian says, ‘Creatures are not born with desires unless satisfaction for those desires exists. A baby feels hunger: well, there is such a thing as food. A duckling wants to swim: well, there is such a thing as water. Men feel sexual desire: well, there is such a thing as sex. If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world. If none of my earthly pleasures satisfy it, that does not prove that the universe is a fraud. Probably earthly pleasures were never meant to satisfy it, but only to arouse it, to suggest the real thing.”

The takeaway for me is that all of these experiences that we get to enjoy are truly special, and absolutely wondrous in their own right. But they are not meant to satisfy. Each of them approaches – but doesn’t quite arrive at – the level and longevity of euphoria and fulfillment and ecstasy and perfection we hope for.

The takeaway for me is that all of these experiences that we get to enjoy are truly special, and absolutely wondrous in their own right. But they are not meant to satisfy. Each of them approaches – but doesn’t quite arrive at – the level and longevity of euphoria and fulfillment and ecstasy and perfection we hope for.

Ever.

But they are pointers to – and dimmer reflections of – something bigger and brighter and greater: God Himself.

I will never be satisfied. Not here in this life. I’m convinced of that. But that’s okay, and that truth has freed me up to stop striving so hard and stop climbing up all of the wrong ladders. I believe I will be satisfied in heaven, and that it will last through eternity. While that may seem ethereal and fluffy and even meaningless to some, it gives me something to look forward to and puts the comparative brevity of this strange life into context. And in the meanwhile, I’ll do my best to enjoy all of the beautiful things He’s created for me here while reminding myself that they can’t ever satisfy me fully. And I’ll allow them to point me to the Creator instead, who is the only one who can.

Image source: https://bit.ly/3gHW97A

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