How do you define a full life? Is it about success, happiness, wealth? Or something different all together? A full life in Jesus gives us a few surprises. God’s blessings are not material ones or self-centered happiness in general. God wants to give us a full life even in parched places. But it doesn’t happen without change. When we come to Jesus, the old life needs to go.
Because God desires holiness. God desires justice. God desires love. Just as said in Micah 6:8 (CEB): “He has told you, human one, what is good and what the Lord requires from you: to do justice, embrace faithful love, and walk humbly with your God.”
Too often we think this is optional. That God did not really mean it. That it’s enough if we take care of ourselves or our loved ones. But the Bible tells us -over and over again- to do justice, love the enemy, take care of the poor, the hungry, the naked. What’s our excuse? Lord, have mercy!
Isn’t this the fast I choose:
releasing wicked restraints, untying the ropes of a yoke,
setting free the mistreated,
and breaking every yoke?
Isn’t it sharing your bread with the hungry
and bringing the homeless poor into your house,
covering the naked when you see them,
and not hiding from your own family?
Then your light will break out like the dawn,
and you will be healed quickly.
Your own righteousness will walk before you,
and the Lord’s glory will be your rear guard.
Then you will call, and the Lord will answer;
you will cry for help, and God will say, “I’m here.”
If you remove the yoke from among you,
the finger-pointing, the wicked speech;
if you open your heart to the hungry,
and provide abundantly for those who are afflicted,
your light will shine in the darkness,
and your gloom will be like the noon.
The Lord will guide you continually
and provide for you, even in parched places.
He will rescue your bones.
You will be like a watered garden,
like a spring of water that won’t run dry.
They will rebuild ancient ruins on your account;
the foundations of generations past you will restore.
You will be called Mender of Broken Walls,
Restorer of Livable Streets.
(Isaiah 58: 6-12, CEB, emphasis added)
This new life with God means that we let Jesus work through us.
This full life in Jesus means that we let the Holy Spirit change us.
This new life in the Spirit means that we live for God.
The benefits of living our lives according to God’s will are out of this world. God does not give like the world gives. God gives life upon life. Grace upon grace. Peace upon peace. Love upon love. Hope upon hope.
When we are living according to God’s will,
we can be sure He answers to us.
When we live the gospel,
the blessings of God will flow into our lives.
When we practice the new life in Jesus,
we will have a full life even in the emptiest of places.
Forgive our selfishness.
Forgive us for stopping your grace to us,
when you’ve meant us to share your grace with everyone.
Your grace does not run out!
Show us how to live according to your will.
Show us how to serve you by doing justice and loving our enemies.
Show us what a full life in Jesus means.
Pour out grace upon grace,
love upon love,
peace upon peace,
life upon life,
hope upon hope.
In Jesus’ name,
Q4U: How does a new life in Jesus change you? How do you practice the gospel?
Be blessed, my fellow pilgrim, as you
Giving thanks today for
#331 a full life even in parched places
#332 God loves us as we are but helps us to change into his likeness
#333 God’s holiness and his desire for us to be holy
#334 the benefits of Kingdom Living are out of this world
#335 God’s work in us for his glory
#336 a change to repent
#337 second chances
#338 merciful God
#339 God’s blessings are the best
#340 new life comes through death