Friday, July 15

As Good as it Gets

Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. --Psalm 63:3

In the move "As Good as it Gets", Melvin Udall, (played by Jack Nicholson), poses the following question to a roomful of despondent psychiatric patients: "What if this is as good as it gets?" Throughout the rest of the movie, Melvin--motivated to attempt to be a better man to win over an attractive waitress (Helen Hunt)--begins to follow his psychiatrist's orders. He takes the necessary prescription to overcome the isolating behaviors of his obsessive-compulsive personality disorder. Gradually he learns how to connect with people, ultimately discovering that the life he had been living wasn't as good as it gets. For Melvin Udall, it got better.

Sometimes Christians find ourselves asking "what if this is as good as it gets?" We look around at the gross injustices in the world, our own shortcomings, and we wonder if God really does have a plan that results in something better than all of this. These questions are not new, nor do they indicate a lack of faith. King David struggled with similar thoughts and expressed them frequently in many of his early Psalms, particularly those he wrote when hiding from Saul in the wilderness.

As we read further in the Psalms, we find David answering his own question about whether life on the run from evil is as good as it gets for any God-fearing man. He finds hope in the knowledge that God's love is better than life. He knows that God offers incredible blessings for those who are faithful to him while enduring the less than perfect life on earth.

Unlike Melvin Udall's psychiatrist in the movie, God does not offer us a prescription to aid in our quest to discover how life gets better. To find a better life, or at least contentment in our present situations, it is important that we seek after God. We must hunger and thirst after him earnestly in order that we, like David, may be given a glimpse of the glory of God's sanctuary.

Even if we feel like we are living a mediocre life, our souls can be satisfied completely. For this, God is to be praised. His love is better than life. For those of us with the assurance of eternal life, that truly will be as good as it gets!

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