Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Counting As Living - The Good Stuff, By Hillary-Beth

Counting As Living - The Good Stuff

By Hillary-Beth Koenig
We're all alive if we can read this article. Have you ever heard the term, "abundant life," though? What if there's a lot of things that shouldn't count
as truly living?
For one thing, merely surviving shouldn't count for living. If we get up every day and make it through the day with no purpose, that is, without
seeking out where Christ is at work in our lives and the lives of those around us, we are missing out on so much.
Along the same lines, beauty is an integrel part of what it means to be alive - possessing some form of it, and admiring it around us. It turns our
focus off of ourselves and can shift our focus to Christ. Have you ever seen something in nature that makes the inside of you just stop and think,
"Wow, God is awesome!" or at least, "Wow, this creature/scene/storm is so detailed/moving/powerful!"
Joy is an integral part as well - holding onto it in our hearts through the darkest days keeps us going, and finding it priceless above the things of
this world keeps us seeking our strength from God. Also hope, true hope, lasts even when the body, heart, and mind has failed. That's because
it's bigger than ourselves; our hope is steady when we trust Christ for all His promises.
Living inside of a trap shouldn't count. What I mean by this is when we find ourselves living in fear, living in self-pity, living in hatred, living in rage, or
living in worry, we can't serve as we are called to, or even enjoy life as we could if these things were not consuming all of our time, energy, and
thoughts. Those terms - fear, self-pity, hatred, rage, worry - are almost contradictory with the word living. It's like existing without the sun - it just can't
be so. (The sun gives energy to the plants that use it for food, they feed us and the animals we eat, and the sun warms the earth and makes it
inhabitable.) Fear paralyzes us. Anger destroys us. Self-pity cuts us off.
Again, wandering aimlessly shouldn't count. Life has too much purpose to squander time after we know the truth. All things can be redeemed, but
why waste such precious time when we can be enjoying life - living abundantly? Giving less than 100% is not experiencing life at 100%. Zoom in, you're missing the good stuff.
Jesus came to give us life, and abundant life at that. (John 10:10)
Abundant = a great plenty, amply supplied, overflowing, teeming, rich, generous, lavish, full, no end of...

Will you live, or live abundantly?


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