Friday, May 1, 2020

Enough

We live in a society of “a little bit more.” By the way that was one of the Rockefeller’s response to the question, “do you have enough?”  A favorite pastor friend of mine, James McDonald is preaching a series about “Attitude.”  He gave couplets like “Complaining vs. contentment or covetousness vs. contentment.”  It seems that both of these might apply to this essay on “enough.”

If we listen to the siren song of the age, we will never have enough. Of course having and getting, buying, taking, catching, stealing enough is a very slippery slope into “I need more too.” This worldly view comes with options, way more than “Do you want fries with that.” How about, “The Moroccan leather seems to suit you perfectly, and you know that the “Z” model comes with retractable “Moon-roof” and 12 speaker stereo for just $10 more per month on a 10 year lease.”  I prefer the M3 BMW models myself, they are so sexy and fast, don’t you think?

Do you know, and more importantly that in the world you will never have enough? Some of you may say AMEN. Others hopefully are saying that you do, and it is from God.  Solomon sought in vain to find satisfaction from the world, but he could not. He wrote many proverbs concerning the bareness of our lives without God. “The grave, the barren womb, the earth that is not satisfied with water— And the fire never says, “Enough!” (Proverbs 30:16).  Our desires are insatiable without God.

The Prophets wrote often on the same subject. “You have sown much, and bring in little; You eat, but do not have enough; You drink, but you are not filled with drink; You clothe yourselves, but no one is warm; And he who earns wages, Earns wages to put into a bag with holes.”  (Haggai 1:6). This is how our society lives. We want more. And at this crucial time in American history it appears that apathy and entitlement are saying that we want government to give it to us. We want a free lunch. I pray for revival in America and perhaps the election will bring it, but the White House is not the source. This is not how we were founded and led to prosper. Our country was built on godly principles. “Godliness with contentment is great gain” (1Timothy 6:6). Timothy, Paul’s protégé is pointing to God.

“And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work” (2Corinthians 9:8). That is a promise of some 7,500 promises in Scripture. Life is a partnership with Christ. If He is your center the following becomes truth, “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19).

If you believe that Christ is your all in all, “which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all(Ephesians 1:23), then you will be able to proclaim as the Apostle Paul, “And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:19). This is a full submission to Christ not the world or yourself. This is the step that it seems most Christians have not made. This is the step or obedience that empties you of you and fills you with the Holy Spirit.
It seems that we need to live through many trials before we begin to see and experience God’s faithfulness and mercy. We begin to realize that God is the one in control and guiding us in His will not ours through the storms of life. The Apostles finally figured this truth out after the resurrection and the filling of the promised Holy Spirit. We just need to receive Christ’s gift of salvation and live in it. Then we will be able like Paul to say. “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. 13 I can do all this through him who gives me strength” (Philippians 4:12-13).

This wonderful secret as Paul calls it is the path of an abundant life. This is a life we live through Christ as we serve Him alone. Then and only then will the truth of the gospel be obtained. “Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you”  (Luke 6:38).

Have you come to the end of yourself where you hand the reigns over to God? This is not the ridiculous idiom of “God is my co-pilot.” No, I’m talking about selling out, giving in, staying under obedience and submission that does not come easily to man. We are sinners and need a Savior who will forgive, cleanse and lead us to this place of fullness in Christ where you will be able to proclaim, “Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus, throughout all generations now and forever more” (Ephesians 3:20).




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