Ephesians 3:20-21 (ESV)
Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen.
Psalm 23:5-6 (ESV)
You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies;
you anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
all the days of my life,
and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord
John 10:10 (ESV)
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.
Two days into Lent and those who have given things up are beginning to anticipate Sunday (only if they practise a celebration day on Sunday) so that they can have a little bit of that thing they have left behind during this season. Those who maybe decided to add something to their spiritual life are frustrated as they try to rearrange their already overbooked schedule to fit this important thing into their day.
I have had an interesting and fruitful relationship with Lent for several years. One year i only drank fruit and veggie juice for the 40 days. Another year I gave up sugar which is hard when you have an addiction to little debbie zebra cakes. I also gave up talk radio at one point and that never came back unless you count podcast. Lent for me was always about giving something up or removing something from the mix of my life.
For many Lent is about deprivation and having less of something. Less food, less enjoyment, less noise, less time. The reality is that many of us live with that mindset all year long. We believe that we just don’t have a sufficient amount of whatever it is that we need. When I was just drinking juice I just wanted something that crunched. When I was without sugar I just wanted something with sugar. I wanted a zebra cake. When I was without talk radio I just wanted nothing. Really no talk radio was pretty great. We can easily fall into a posture of want.
The verses above remind us that we can be in a posture of abundance. Lent walks us toward the proclamation of the overflowing Love of God. The moments of wanting push us toward seeing that God through Jesus Christ has poured out into our lives His Love, Mercy, Truth and Pleasure. Our cup overflows. He does more than we can imagine. We have a life abundant or as the Message says, “I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of.”
Father, you are overflowing with love. You are all that we need. In our desire for more teach us that you are the abundance. Change our posture of want to one of abundance. And in the abundance of your love let us overflow to all those around us. amen.