One of my favorite scriptures is John 10:10, which says, The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance [to the full, till it overflows] (AMP).
I remember when this verse became revelation for me and made me realize that my life in Christ is not supposed to be a drudgery, with a “barely getting through the day, hanging on till Jesus comes back to get me” mentality. Jesus clearly says here that in Him, we can enjoy life and have it in abundance!
So why is it that so many are struggling to live their lives with peace, joy, and contentment? Many times the reason is selfishness and disobedience.
What Abundant Life in Christ Means for Us
I’ve learned throughout the years as I’ve grown in my relationship with Christ that the best life—the abundant life He died to give us—is found in loving God and helping others.
When we love God, we want to please Him and obey His leadership in our lives. Jesus says in John 8:31 (AMP), “If you abide in My word [continually obeying My teachings and living in accordance with them, then] you are truly My disciples.”
It’s so important for us to grow in our love for God because that is what compels us to live for Him and obey Him in every area of our lives. As walk in promp, complete obedience to Him, we grow up spiritually and become sons and daughters He can trust and work through to do great things in our world.
My hope in sharing this message is that it will increase your desire to obey God completely and promptly so you won’t settle for less than the best He has for you. Desire is vital because we have to want to be obedient or we won’t do it.
You Can’t Do It On Your Own
I want to say here that while we have to make a determined decision to live for God, we can’t do it successfully in our own strength. That’s why, as believers in Christ, God gives us the Holy Spirit to be our helper and empower us to do what’s right.
I know it’s not always easy—believe me, I’ve been there many times. So I understand if you’re thinking, But Joyce, it’s so hard to do the right thing all the time. It’s hard to forgive people who have hurt me...to keep a good attitude when my boss is unfair...to be nice when people aren’t nice to me... and the list could go on and on.
But the truth is what’s really hard is having no hope, peace, joy or the righteousness of God. It’s hard to be angry all the time and live with bitterness and unforgiveness...to be miserable and deal with the consequences of ungodly behaviors, like sickness, having hangovers or addictions to things that are killing us anyway.
I really want you to get this today: Everything God tells us to do is for our good. And the best thing we can do is obey His direction promptly and completely.
Obedience to God is the answer to overcoming sin and any problem you face. It’s the way we grow and become everything He created us to be. And it’s the pathway to the life you really want to live!