If You Need What I’ve Got
I write these things to you who believe in the name of the Son of God, that you may know that you have eternal life. 1 John 5:13
Occasionally, I’ll be approached by an acquaintance who’s taking an expensive multivitamin, who wants me to know the benefits of taking this vitamin. He (or she) is usually benefitting financially from the product and wants me to buy into it too. The promise of magical weight loss is always tempting but practicing medicine has taught me that I simply cannot trust the evidence supporting a specific product when it comes from a source that is financially benefitting from the product. It’s just not reliable evidence. I need to see authentic, proven, bias-free transformation before I buy into an idea.
Still, I get why he’s trying to convince me. It’s not that he’s lying. He truly believes. If I’ve had some life changing experience, I want to tell others, convincing them that they too, should buy into what I’ve discovered. If I eat at an amazing restaurant, I tell others about it. If I love my gym, I share that with my friends. The problem for me is when others just aren’t interested. Why can’t they see what I see? Not everyone wants to go to CrossFit and not everyone loves Indian food. I need to be OK with that. Sometimes though, I’ll meet someone who wants what I’ve experienced. Then, I can and should share that which I’ve come to know.
This seems to be John’s message in today’s passage. He personally knew Jesus, followed him as a disciple, and had been utterly transformed by the experience. He’d come to know authentic, eternal life and so, he wanted to share that with others. This was the purpose of his writing – to point others to eternal life. John wasn’t selling something from which he befitted financially. Being an early Christian wasn’t an easy life. Still, because of what Christ had done for him, he couldn’t not tell others. If his neighbors saw John’s new life and needed what he had, they too could find transformation in Christ.
I’m no apostle, but this is why I write as well. I know that not everyone feels they need a new life in Christ. I also know those that are drowning in the old life though. I’ve been there and so I write for them. I don’t do it perfectly. I still have struggles. But, in my new life, I don’t struggle with the burden of a drug addiction. In daily attempting to abandon my way for God’s way, I’ve found recovery, life, joy, and peace. And so, I daily write for those who’re seeking the same thing.