When I was at Fuller Seminary, the president, who was a wonderful pastor and ended up becoming a good friend, shared a story with me about attending a Rolling Stones concert in the 1970’s. He said that the arena was full of people cheering, screaming, and going crazy. The energy escalated throughout the event, and it came to a pinnacle when Keith Richards broke into the opening of “I Can’t Get No Satisfaction.” As the crowd erupted in cheers, the song got louder and louder and the masses started singing along. Finally, in an unexpected climax, the band stopped playing their instruments and the people began repeating, in refrain, that famous line — “I Can’t Get No Satisfaction” — with an almost religious fervor. Though until that point he had joined in their excitement, right then, the Holy Spirit gave him an epiphany that caused a wave of sadness to sweep over him. In spite of the cheering of the crowd, he realized that thousands of souls were making a declaration that they were unsatisfied, even amidst a host of worldly pleasures. Sadly, not much has changed in the nearly 50 years since that concert. Though we have more money, entertainment, conveniences, electronics, and substances than ever before, we are less satisfied than we’ve ever been. In spite of our constant attempts to find happiness through other means, apart from Jesus Christ, we are destined to turn up disappointed, time after time.
My friend, as your life begins to resume a few normalities again, I encourage you not to revert to finding pleasure in things that don’t really satisfy. Though this season of quarantine has been tough on you, my prayer is that you’ve found a treasure in the stillness that’s enabled you to grow closer to Jesus. While it’s exciting to imagine life as it was before the pandemic, don’t discount the ways in which you’ve been changed by slowing down, and do everything you can to keep your finger on the pulse of what’s truly important. You’re a peaceful and grounded disciple of your Savior, and you operate in greater power when you remain committed to His easy rhythms of grace and allow them to govern the activities of your daily life.