Archive for April 24th, 2008

Making It All Matter

Thursday, April 24th, 2008

Today’s scripture: Luke 4:31-37 (ESV-text and audio) (NRSV) (The Message)

As you read, consider: What might God be saying to me? Summarize your thoughts in a sentence or two.

My thoughts (Mark Shoup):

Have you ever had one of those weeks? A week where it seemed like it was one crisis after another, and you were afraid to say, “What else can happen?” because you were pretty sure it wouldn’t be long before you found out? I have just had one of those weeks. To be honest, it’s been more like one of those months. I’m not going to get into the specifics, because we have all have been there, and most of us will be there again at some point.

While I was reading today’s scripture and wondering what God had for me in it, it struck me that Jesus really didn’t have to cast the demon out of that man. His mission was to be the sacrifice for our sins and to provide an avenue for imperfect humans to find their way back to God. He didn’t have to heal the sick and raise the dead, or free people from demon oppression to do that.

But still he did those things.

In John 10:10, Jesus says that “He has come that they (we) may have life, and have it abundantly.” In light of this scripture, it sounds like Jesus is interested in giving us not only eternal life in the next plain of existence, but also abundant life to us right now.

The good news in this is that I don’t have to settle for having a crappy existence, or even a crappy month. Knowing that God doesn’t want that for me, I can pray for guidance, help, direction, or whatever is going to serve to deliver me from my current situation into a richer, fuller way of living.

I’m pretty sure that abundant living isn’t necessarily easy living. But it is living that matters, or living with a purpose. There will always be “those weeks”, but even they can be endured when there is purpose and reason behind life’s struggles.

It reminds me of watching A Baby Story on the Learning Channel. Childbirth, by all indications, is no walk in the park. But it usually isn’t hard work and pain for no reason. There is a purpose. And that is how God wants us to live our lives, so that we can look back on it and think it was all worth it.

Thought for the day: What’s weighing me down today (or this week, or this month)? How does that fit into the plan for “abundant life” that Jesus came to bring me?

We encourage you to include a time of prayer with this reading. If you need a place to get started, consider the guidelines on the How to Pray page.

"Be still, and know that I am God." Psalm 46:10
Be still and know… is proudly powered by WordPress.