Luke 15 13-17
Essence Of Love Is Sacrifice
(13) And not many days after the younger son gathered all together, and took his journey into a far country, and there wasted his substance with riotous living. (14) And when he had spent all, there arose a mighty famine in that land; and he began to be in want. (15) And he went and joined himself to a citizen of that country; and he sent him into his fields to feed swine. (16) And he would fain have filled his belly with the husks that the swine did eat: and no man gave unto him. (17) And when he came to himself, he said, How many hired servants of my father’s have bread enough and to spare, and I perish with hunger!
The question at this point is still, “How are we trying to find satisfaction in life?” We could reword it, “How are we trying to find love, joy, and peace?” The Parable of the Prodigal Son touches on this issue.
Like the young man, we yearn for a feeling of well-being, peace, security, fun, and happiness. Also like him, we pursue after them, attempting to produce them in virtually every way but the Father’s way. We, like him, experience the same empty, hollow, something-is-missing feelings.
Some may remember a popular song “Here Comes That Rainy Day Feeling Again” by The Fortunes. https://youtu.be/s3zxJuhpc-Q The lyrics dealt with this very subject. The singers are expressing missing the one they love yet having found no lasting satisfaction looking for happiness. The song clearly expresses that such a life is not truly fulfilling.
What is missing from such a life is the true purpose of life combined with the effort of fulfilling it by living the required way. The three offerings in Leviticus 1-3—the burnt, meal, and peace offerings—broadly define God’s way of life: doing all things within the context of His purpose in love. As we have seen, I John 5:3 defines love as keeping the commandments, and the essence of love is sacrificial giving.
Though without the Spirit of God, some people (psychologists and therapist, for instance) have figured out much of this. The part they have not determined through observing humanity is the true purpose of life because God has not revealed it to them. I found this to be true in my life. The therapist had no understanding of love through the spirit of God. They have, however, found that the essence of love is sacrifice and that doing the right things produces a sense of well-being.