A large concrete monument adorns a pasture remembering the original bands and singers who performed at Woodstock in 1969. At its twenty-fifth anniversary, thousands gathered at this site to remember and reflect on the hopes and dreams of the Woodstock Nation. Many middle aged folks who were part of the original party came in their BMW’s with their cell phones. In 1969 the Vietnam War was winding down. The flower children of Woodstock were in their heyday. Their peace symbol, cries for peace, and mostly peaceful demonstrations did not bring in an era of either national or personal peace.
The flower children of the sixties gave way to the despair of the nineties, and the decades that followed. As we walked through the Woodstock site, this despair was evident. The major theme of artwork on display, whether jewelry or paintings, was death. Garish skulls and contorted bodies filled the tents and tables. They reflected the sense of hopelessness in the hearts of the artists. When a small group of us sang Scriptures songs near the monument in that pasture, a group gathered. Some lamented our presence and tried to shout us down. When we began to speak to the crowd about Christ, one fellow cried, “Think for yourselves, think for yourselves.” He had nothing to offer except that empty exhortation.
That seemed to typify the situation. Emptiness is the alternative to life without Jesus Christ. That emptiness was all around us. The original flower children were in a desperate search for peace. They found temporary relief from the drudgery of life through drugs and sex and music. But the gnawing emptiness of heart remained. Now that emptiness is celebrated. The best way to face life is to acknowledge the despair and glory in it. How sad!
Decades later, in 2020, this nagging despair is is still present. Why is the message of Jesus Christ is so important? In the midst of unemployment, underemployment, COVID-19, protests and riots, personal and family unrest, we can find real peace only in Christ. “For He Himself is our peace” (Ephesians 2:14).
Today’s podcast also urges you to “Recommit Yourself to Christ.”