We were created for worship and fashioned for praise. Tortured genius and brilliant critic of the church, Frederick Nietzsche, believed that human beings are driven by a will to power. We are, he said, desperate to have a sense of mastery over the sinister, unseen but real forces which would imprison the human spirit. We crave a sense of control over the chaos that threatens us.
Sigmund Freud claimed that human beings are pushed and pulled by a will to pleasure. To dull the pain and apparent pointlessness of life, we seek release and ecstasy.
Getting closer to what I think is the truth about us, Alfred Adler and Victor Frankl said that we are motivated by a will to meaning. We are restless to make sense out of life, to know why we are here, and to discover the purpose of it all.
I believe that deeper than the drive for power, the urge for pleasure, and, even, the quest for meaning is a primal will to worship. We yearn to be taken up into mystery and mercy and ache to abandon ourselves in adoration of the Holy.
In a moment of shining awareness, Augustine saw the truth about us, and offered this now well-known prayer: “You arouse us to take joy in praising You, for you have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they rest in you.”
The deepest joy in life is found when we give the greatest glory to God. We find our truest selves when we are “lost in wonder, love, and praise.”