Nena Arias | February 3, 2020
When the rates of unhappiness, suicide, self-injury, depression, mass shootings, and loneliness are higher than ever recorded, we must conclude that the way our society is looking at life is definitely wrong.
How can it be that it seems Americans may have been happier, and less lonely, in times of facing grave danger and threats to our existence? How can that be when today Americans have better health, are living longer, have a higher level of education and are better off financially.
People may want to blame it on a myriad of reasons and explanations, like the breakup of the family, increased use of illicit drugs and prescription drug abuse, and less human interaction due to technology may certainly be at the top of valid explanations. Also, some people may want to blame capitalism, and income inequality but this does not hold water because capitalism is what built this country. So, what is it?
Whether people want to admit it or not, the loss of values and the spiritual meaning of life as the Bible teaches is the greatest source of all this meaninglessness, suffering, confusion and unhappiness. Without God, people don’t have the answers to the most important existential questions of life. Who am I? Where did I come from? Where am I going?
The only one that can answer all these questions truthfully is our Creator/God. He says, in Jeremiah 1:5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you.” There is no greater asset to our identity than to know who we are and where we belong. According to God, we were not made to merely exist and drift in life, which is the way too many people are living these days in America and the world. So, the loss of faith, which causes loss of identity, values and meaning is the greatest source of unhappiness.
Even outsiders, long ago, could see that the backbone of America’s success as a nation was its solid foundation on its beliefs and how they were lived. The great foreign observer of early American life Frenchman Alexis de Tocqueville wrote in 1831, that Americans’ unique strength was derived largely from their participation in their religious beliefs.
But these have all dwindled as humanism and relativism have taken over and as government has become so dominant. For Americans, to love God and our neighbors as ourselves was a dominant way of life. We got together and formed bonds of friendship through worshipping our God and then participating in nongovernmental associations to serve those in need and to become an important part of our neighbor’s life. I’m not talking about meddling here. Through what organizations will Americans form true friendships today? A friendship is not a casual meeting at a bar, a party or at a superficial self-pleasing club or institution participation of some kind.
Government seems to be the only thing that we all belong to, and forcibly at that.
God has been left out of the most important institution in our society, marriage. A religious ceremony does not mean the couple is honoring God. This is obvious by the extremely high divorce rate. Also, there are values, like getting married first and then having children. It has become all too common for couples to just live together, produce children and then when they get tired of one another they look for someone else and move on to do the same thing all over again.
Today, a greater percentage of Americans are born to unwed mothers than ever before, and fewer people are marrying than ever before. There are, for the first time in our history, more single Americans than married Americans.
The biggest problem of all humans is the lack of meaning. Aside from food, water and sleep, the greatest human need is meaning. What am I living for that is truly worthwhile?
The Bible is the only true source that will answer that question satisfactorily whether we like the answer or not is besides the point. Some people prefer to believe in falsehoods so they can justify their licentious living. They reject God’s perspective altogether and they in vain look elsewhere for their answers.
Karl Marx thought humans should mostly focus on economics; Sigmund Freud saw man as driven by the sexual drive; Charles Darwin, or at least his followers, sees us as mostly driven by biology. Hence the reason for the disarray in our society.
But when the focus and belief is on God, poor people who have meaning can be happy, but wealthy people who lack meaning cannot be. The same is true about sex, people who do not have an active sexual life but have meaning can be very happy. On the other hand, sexually active people who do not have a meaning or an unmovable value system cannot be. Biologically, all creatures except humans do fine without meaning, not so with humans, it is an imperative need to have true and sustainable meaning to life to develop a vibrant life.
Faith in the God of the Bible gives, not only Americans but any other people, true life meaning. But since the middle of the 20th century, matters of faith in God, the Almighty, have been put on the back burner or ignored altogether. Too many Americans have dared to go it alone in life and we are seeing the devastating results.
Not being affiliated to a system of faith, mainly the Christian faith, is unprecedented in our history; until this generation, the vast majority of Americans have been particularly religious. Interestingly, the majority still claim to be of the Christian faith, but obviously that faith is not translating into good results. This can only point to one factor; they are religious in name only.
Is it any wonder that dissatisfaction with life is so prevalent? I would go so far as to say that the increase in mental illness is due to this lack of a true anchor in life.
It is reported that a 2016 study published in the American Medical Association JAMA Psychiatry journal found that American women who attended a religious service at least once a week were five times less likely to commit suicide. It is likely that this is true also of men.
It makes perfect sense that due to the rise of the leftist ideas in America which have told us that belief in God is unnecessary or nonsense is what is causing people to believe they are on their own in life.
The leftist ideas are being drilled into our young people that their country is evil; their past is hideous; and their future is hopeless. It is obvious what this is doing to our generation, especially the young.
Bottom line: the turmoil and chaos in our country is due to the godlessness of our national existence. This is producing the destructive manifestation coming from the evil unregenerate heart. That is the only major factor that explains much of the unprecedented unhappiness. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?” (Jeremiah 17:9)
The leftist doesn’t know or doesn’t want to admit that it is their brand of “religion” and system of belief that is destroying people and nations.
If we hope to fix America’s problems, we must turn to America’s founding for the answers on how best to face a promising future.