“The loneliest moment in life is when you have just experienced that which you thought would deliver the ultimate, and it has just let you down.” – Ravi Zacharias
What do you do when your cherished fantasies dissolve, or resolve into unsatisfying reality?
What are we living for when our “ultimate” fails to live up to expectations and lets us down?
What hope do you cling to when the concept that you find so compelling and important is disregarded by those who need it most?
How do you handle the realization that you cannot change the world, and your spit in the ocean feels so insignificant?
What happens when the acquisition of knowledge fails to satisfy or give enough answers?
What do you do when your youth and beauty fade, and you are left, mid-life, looking backwards?
What happens when sex does not completely fulfill the intimate longing, when the promises of romance fail or only partly deliver?
When the euphoria of music leaves you looking beyond, what then?
When the temporary satiation of an addiction leaves you feeling spent and used, and the effects diminished, how do you deal handle the disappointment?
What is the next level, the further hope beyond what has let us down so far, that we cling to as the “real” ultimate? Can we afford to let ourselves hope again?
Do we fall back on the safe, “second string” hopes and dreams we’ve been settling for all along?
Do we collapse into pessimistic fatalism, avoiding dreams and the crushing despair of their dissolution?
How do we deal with the despair of a life of days in a high-walled rut of rote and routine? Would we even have the will and energy to try to break out? How do we resist the hypnosis by the tunnel on the lonely road of despair?
Is it even possible to stop dreaming? Some of our hopes and fantasies are not articulated in our consciousness until we realize they are out of reach. We seem to be built to dream.
I know the Christian answer: the hole left by collapsed dreams, hopes, and fantasies is God-shaped, and anything else that promises to fill it is a counterfeit, a sin, and/or a misapplication of some “good” that isn’t meant to be so glorified. I allegedly believe this, but don’t do well applying it, as I reach for things in sight and place my hopes of fulfillment in them.
Is there no good in this world in which to reach for or dream about? “The Lust, the Flesh, the Eyes, and the Pride of life, drain the life right out of me.” (77s paraphrase of 1 John 2:16)
Maybe this is what is meant by “coming to the end of yourself.”
So Jesus said to the Twelve, “Do you want to go away as well?” Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life” John 6:67-68
Edit: See here for my response to this post.