My Faulty Abundant Life Theology
When I was younger, I had a theology that said once I learned all I needed to, everything in my life would finally line up, my struggles would end, and the abundant, good life would finally begin. That belief led me to a life of striving to get – there. Where ever there was. I was constantly trying to sprint through hard times, instead of travailing through them with meaningful and steadfast determination. The end, you see, was far more important me than the journey itself. So, every time something difficult time came, I asked God to hurry up and teach me what I needed me to learn so whatever was going on would just end. Patience may have been a virtue, but it really held no value to me.
Now, there is no doubt that I did learn a great deal through every difficult circumstance I went through during those years. Probably the biggest thing I learned though, was that my theology about living abundantly was all messed up. In John 10:10 Jesus said,
The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
Friends, the secret to living life filled with abundance is discovering where that authentic abundance is found. If you’re looking for it in financial stability, that can disappear in a blink of an eye during a recession. If it you look for it in human relationship, a death or divorce will erase it. If you’re looking for it in your own abilities a health crisis, accident can rob you of it before you know it. Believe me. I’ve tried all of those things. Every single one of them and none of them brought me lasting peace or any sense of abundance. It has only been through a growing and deepening personal relationship with Jesus, where he has walked with me through my darkest moments, and carried me through my worst fears that I came to understand living abundantly is life with the assurance of salvation, the hope of Heaven, the never-ending compassion of a loving God and the promise that HE WILL NEVER LEAVE ME OR FORSAKE ME.
Friends, living abundantly isn’t something that comes when we’ve arrived at a certain position in life or when suffering is finally over. It is in fact the exact opposite of that. It is found by walking hand in hand with Jesus through the joys and sorrows; when steady or faltering; strong or weak; filled with hope or hopeless.
Yes, living abundantly looks differently than most think from my vantage point of view. It often endures seasons of suffering and heartache, where tears are shed and questions are asked. But the abundance of God’s love, hope, saving grace and salvation embraces me, holds me and comforts me in ways that nothing else can. His hope for Heaven inspire me to persevere when things are gut-wrenchingly hard. His grace for today sustains me through even the most difficult of days. So yes, I am living the abundant life in a broken world filled with ups and downs, disappointments and sufferings. It is abundant not because everything is perfect but because the God I serve is. In His perfect love He gently cares for me, comforts me, provides for me and teaches me.
How I want you to know this life changing, peace giving, steadfast growing, abundance too.
As I close today, I can’t help but reflect on the day my son James was born. James was born 13 week early at just 2 pounds 2 ounces. He was born by C-section and I had to wait for a long time before I could see him. Once the nurse carried him to my side he already had tubes down his throat and tape all over his face. His eyes were diverted away from mine but when I called him, his eyes instantly met mine and in that moment all he saw was love.
I believe it is the same with us and God in Heaven. We are like my son James was. We are spiritually broken and need spiritual life support to help us survive. God in Heaven calls our name and when we look to Him, all we see and experience is His abundant life – His abundant love.
If you do not yet know Jesus click here. Knowing him, is the beginning of finding peace like no other.
My love to all of you.