As the apostle Luke suggests to us in the second chapter of his gospel, Simeon and Anna longed for a better world. They longed for God. Their longing was not a symptom of disease but a pointer toward the cure. The restlessness within riches that is typical in western society today shows the truth of the Christian understanding that we all have ineradicable spiritual longings. As Christians, we do not want to be merely brighter and more articulate animals. As Christians, we want the courage to embrace reality with all its sharp edges.
Anxiety and misery are often at Scriptural center stage. The psalms are remarkable for their highs and lows. When Elijah, just one day after the great victory against the prophets of Baal and Asherah on Mount Carmel, ran away and asked to die, God didn’t tell him to be happy happy happy happy happy all the time. We should not press ourselves or our children to superficial smiling conformity, but to a deeper understanding of the Bible,
Biblically, we see that some emptiness comes from God and makes us realize that we need Him to fill the holes in our souls.