Grasping the Abundant Life ~ A Guest Post by Daniel Moore

Posted on Feb 8, 2013 in Faith | 69 comments

IMG_2571Dear Readers ~ When I read this devotional written by my friend Daniel Moore, the Director of Strategy & Recruitment at Affirm Kenya, I was blessed and challenged.  I pray you will be, too–on your own journey towards “true fulfillment!” 

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.” – John 10:10

I want to begin today by saying this is an amazing promise we have from Jesus! He has come to give us life, so abundantly that it overflows and we can’t help but sharing it with everyone! When we grasp this truth and really implement it into our lives, I believe that we can’t help but transform this broken world.

Unfortunately, I often return to the things that give me temporary pleasure, ignoring the lasting joy and abundant life that Jesus offers. Selfishness, pride, greed, laziness and so many other things get in the way, making me think that the gratification of these selfish desires will bring me lasting happiness. Even good desires, when taken out of context or placed above God, become idols that provide only a façade of joy. I was reading Tolstoy’s Ana Karenina a few months ago and came across a quote that resonates with me to this day. He says, “Vronsky meanwhile, in spite of the complete realization of what he had so long desired, was not perfectly happy. He soon felt that the realization of his desires gave him no more than a grain of sand out of the mountain of happiness he had expected. It showed him the mistake men make in picturing to themselves happiness as the realization of their desires.”

So how can we grasp the abundant life that Jesus offers? I believe this is a process that starts with accepting Jesus’ sacrifice, and continues as we choose to either gratify the flesh or allow God to shape our desires. Daily we must choose to either take up our cross and follow Jesus, or follow the easy road and do whatever we want. Abundant life for us lies not in getting what we want, but in following Jesus, allowing Him to mold our desires into His desires so the two become inseparable. As sinful human beings this may not be completely possible on earth, but God is gracious and thankfully sees the intentions of our hearts as well as our actions.

I’ve been thinking a lot about true fulfillment as opposed to happiness lately. I believe that fulfillment lies in our relationship with Jesus and consequently carrying out His words. To serve sacrificially, love unconditionally, live selflessly, to step out in faith, to find contentment despite suffering – all in the context of loving God – that is the abundant life. My challenge for everyone is that we look deeply into the life of Jesus daily and mold our lives according to His words, never forgetting that we serve an incredible God who has plans for us far beyond our wildest imaginations, if only we will follow His leading.

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable – if anything is excellent or praiseworthy – think about such things.” – Philippians 4:8

 

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