Black holes, many astronomers believe, are big holes in the universe that act like giant vacuum cleaners, sucking whatever gets close enough into their immense gravitational field—small things like dust, meteors, and household pets, as well as large things like planets and stars. The gravitational pull of a black hole is so powerful it even sucks in light.
Black holes begin as giant stars that eventually lose their fuel and collapse, imploding so fast and so hard they create something like an inny belly button in time and space. To describe this process astronomers use big words I have to look up, so it helps me to picture a basketball losing air so fast and collapsing so hard under its own weight that it turns into a vacuum cleaner hose. That’s the black hole theory in a nutshell.
No one knows exactly where the dust and planets and stars that enter a black hole eventually go. Most astronomers believe they travel through “worm holes” and empty out on the other side of the universe somewhere. My best guess is that it all gets dumped in New Jersey, but this theory hasn’t gained widespread acceptance among astronomers yet.
To me, the soul of someone far from God is like a newly formed black hole—large and consuming. It’s as if the human soul has a gravitational thirst of its own. We know we are empty, so we try to consume whatever comes into close range in a futile attempt to fill our souls.
Some people try to fill their souls with acceptable things like education or a career or kids or a two-car garage in the suburbs. Others try to fill it with alcohol or drugs or sex or fame. Whatever the fix, that’s all it turns out to be, just a temporary fix. Nothing ever actually fills the void.
What makes matters worse—or better, depending on how you look at it—is that God recognizes our emptiness and does something to make us even emptier—he sends trials into our lives. To the empty soul God sends things like diabetes and corporate downsizing and marital disharmony.
With each trial the black holes in our souls widen and grow and swirl with even more foment and agitation. Eventually we’re throwing Jupiter-sized fixes at the black holes yet they remain unfazed, and God smiles, because it is all part of his plan. God knows that at some point we’ll figure out that the void can’t be filled with anything from this world, and then we’ll start looking somewhere else.
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