Thirteenth Sunday after Pentecost August 23, 2015
The Source of Eternal Life
An individual was on a pilgrimage, searching for the secret of eternal life. “You must cease wanting it,” said one teacher. “It is only when you realize that there is no eternal life, and give up searching for its secret, that you will understand. Then all will become clear, and you will be at peace.” “Have you found the secret?” persisted the searcher. “No! Haven’t you heard what I’ve been saying?”
The searcher kept searching. He came upon a second teacher and asked: “What is the secret of eternal life?” The teacher explained, “Life, like death, is an illusion. There is no eternal life to be found, nor is this life real. All is illusion. Enjoy yourself. Create your own reality.” The searcher still wasn’t satisfied and kept searching.
Finally, he picked up a book. In that book he met a third Teacher. “I am the secret of eternal life,” that person said in the words of the book. “No one will be saved unless I save them.” “Where can I find you?” asked the searcher. The Teacher said: “Invite me into your heart, and you will find me there. Look for me in the pages of this book, and there I’ll be. Find me in the eyes of your loved ones. Discover me among the poor and despairing. Worship me with gladness, and I’ll fill you with true peace.”
“And you are the secret of eternal life?” the searcher persisted. “You, the Jesus I’ve heard about all my life? How can I know it is you?”
“Read my words,” Jesus said. “Read the testimony of those who are eyewitnesses of my deeds. When others left, those who knew me best saw nowhere else to go. I am the way, the truth, and the life. I am the source of eternal life.”
Scott Venable, pastor, Fairview Moravian Church, Winston-Salem, North Carolina