Oliver ๐’ฏ๐“Œ๐’พ๐“ˆ๐“‰

At the tail end of his earthly ministry, Jesus prayed for the disciples. While praying, He made this bold statementโ€“ I brought glory to you here on earth by completing the work you gave me to do.

I read this, and wondered, right here and right now, can I say the same? I thought, yes. But truth be told, it was a shaky one. I am saved. I believed in my heart and confessed Jesus as my Lord and Savior. It was, and still is the best decision I ever made. I am not eternally damned. Thatโ€™s major. Yet, it is only the tip of the iceberg. Now that I am saved, what am I doing with my salvation? Who is benefiting from my being saved? Am I in relationship with Him? Am I committed to our relationship? Am I consistent? Does my life reflect Him? Am I bearing fruits? If yes, are they good? What is the purpose of my life if it is not in service to God, if it does not point others to Him? And the chief question, does my life glorify God? I have heard folks say something like, so long as I make it through the doors of heaven I’m good. ๐—•๐˜‚๐˜ ๐—ถ๐˜€ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ ๐—ฎ๐—น๐—น ๐—š๐—ผ๐—ฑ ๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ป๐—ฑ๐—ฒ๐—ฑ? If it were, ๐™ฌ๐™๐™ฎ ๐™ž๐™จ๐™ฃ’๐™ฉ ๐™š๐™ซ๐™š๐™ง๐™ฎ ๐™จ๐™–๐™ซ๐™š๐™™ ๐™ฅ๐™š๐™ง๐™จ๐™ค๐™ฃ ๐™ž๐™ข๐™ข๐™š๐™™๐™ž๐™–๐™ฉ๐™š๐™ก๐™ฎ ๐™ฉ๐™ง๐™–๐™ฃ๐™จ๐™ฅ๐™ค๐™จ๐™š๐™™ ๐™ฉ๐™ค ๐™๐™š๐™–๐™ซ๐™š๐™ฃ? This lets me know there is more. For the time we are on this God made earth, we are called to BE more, and DO more. The bare minimum is selfish.

These are hard questions that force introspection. They place you under a microscope for self-examination, bringing the thoughts, words, deeds, and intentions that shape your existence to the forefront; all freakishly enlarged for observation. The time spent lost in thought led me to this conclusion; there is no promising alternative to ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—น๐—น ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐˜† ๐—ด๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฑ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ณ๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ต๐—ณ๐˜‚๐—น ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜ƒ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜ |Matthew 25:23|. I live to hear those words.

You know that famed question, what are you most afraid of? My answers were always superficial. The umbrella reply being I am afraid of failure. Truth? It was the easiest response to give. I could hide in the pool of 90% of the worldโ€™s population equally terrified of failure. When given a shovel to dig deeper, I learned that it was less about failure and more about abandonment. I was deathly afraid of abandonment. Call it daddy issues. In Christ however, all fear bows. Charles Spurgeon said it best, ๐š๐š‘๐šŽ ๐š๐šŽ๐šŠ๐š› ๐š˜๐š ๐™ถ๐š˜๐š ๐š’๐šœ ๐š๐š‘๐šŽ ๐š๐šŽ๐šŠ๐š๐š‘ ๐š˜๐š ๐šŽ๐šŸ๐šŽ๐š›๐šข ๐š˜๐š๐š‘๐šŽ๐š› ๐š๐šŽ๐šŠ๐š›; ๐š•๐š’๐š”๐šŽ ๐šŠ ๐š–๐š’๐š๐š‘๐š๐šข ๐š•๐š’๐š˜๐š—, ๐š’๐š ๐šŒ๐š‘๐šŠ๐šœ๐šŽ๐šœ ๐šŠ๐š•๐š• ๐š˜๐š๐š‘๐šŽ๐š› ๐š๐šŽ๐šŠ๐š›๐šœ ๐š‹๐šŽ๐š๐š˜๐š›๐šŽ ๐š’๐š.

Jesus gave me a home. His sacrifice launched me into the Fatherโ€™s arms. He will not abandon me. It is a truth I stake my life on because I live it daily. I am saved glory be to God. But I still live in this body. A body that craves. A body with desires. A body that moves in a fallen world. My saving grace is none other than Jesus. In the name of Jesus, I can take every thought captive. I can surrender my mind and body. I can lay down my will. I can crucify idolatry. I can say no. I can resist. All because of Jesus.

When I recommend a restaurant, product, or service it is because I have had 1st hand experience with it. I am less likely to give a passionate endorsement if only based on secondhand opinions. We must first experience God for others to experience Him in us. We reveal God when He reveals Himself to us. That comes with relationship, not religion. This way when we talk about Jesus it does not come off pretentious, preachy, or holier than thou. I am telling my story. My experience of Him. We are not advertising a rule book, but his life-giving words. We are not promoting spooky encounters, but the divine. Holy in every way. As real as real can be.

For all that He has done for me, what do I give in return? What, other than my whole heart is sufficient? Jesus lived in the will of the Father, and thus could make that audacious statement. ๐—”๐—บ ๐—œ ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐˜€๐—ฎ๐—บ๐—ฒ? ๐˜ˆ๐˜ณ๐˜ฆ ๐˜บ๐˜ฐ๐˜ถ? I said earlier that I live to hear God say ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—น๐—น ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐˜† ๐—ด๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฑ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ณ๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ต๐—ณ๐˜‚๐—น ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜ƒ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜, but am I ๐™ป๐™ธ๐š…๐™ธ๐™ฝ๐™ถ for Christ? The same verse goes on to say, ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚ ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐˜ƒ๐—ฒ ๐—ฏ๐—ฒ๐—ฒ๐—ป ๐—ณ๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ต๐—ณ๐˜‚๐—น ๐˜„๐—ถ๐˜๐—ต ๐—ฎ ๐—ณ๐—ฒ๐˜„ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด๐˜€; ๐—œ ๐˜„๐—ถ๐—น๐—น ๐—ฝ๐˜‚๐˜ ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚ ๐—ถ๐—ป ๐—ฐ๐—ต๐—ฎ๐—ฟ๐—ด๐—ฒ ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜† ๐˜๐—ต๐—ถ๐—ป๐—ด๐˜€. ๐—˜๐—ป๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ ๐—ถ๐—ป๐˜๐—ผ ๐˜๐—ต๐—ฒ ๐—ท๐—ผ๐˜† ๐—ผ๐—ณ ๐˜†๐—ผ๐˜‚๐—ฟ ๐—บ๐—ฎ๐˜€๐˜๐—ฒ๐—ฟ. I don’t know about you, but I also want that joy now, not just in the sweet by and by. To be trusted with many things now, here on earth so I can do more for His kingdom. Stewardship now, and later. Joy now, and later.

Think of something or someone you love. What did you sacrifice to get that thing, or be with that someone? Letโ€™s make it a tad simpler. Think of a goal you achieved despite the hurdlesโ€“ career, education, health et al. How much time, money and effort did you invest? Thatโ€™s sacrifice. Why should God get less?

My intent for this post is to stir up a desire in you for more. God is bottomless. There is no end to Him. He welcomes the Oliver Twist in you. Ask for more of Him, so more of Him can pour out of you.

In our daily lives, and at the pearly gates let us all hear the Father say, ๐˜„๐—ฒ๐—น๐—น ๐—ฑ๐—ผ๐—ป๐—ฒ ๐—บ๐˜† ๐—ด๐—ผ๐—ผ๐—ฑ ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐—ฑ ๐—ณ๐—ฎ๐—ถ๐˜๐—ต๐—ณ๐˜‚๐—น ๐˜€๐—ฒ๐—ฟ๐˜ƒ๐—ฎ๐—ป๐˜.

Happy Monyaaay!
Xo, ๐‘€๐‘’๐“.

Picture: @pinterest

1 Comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s