Oh, the randomness...

Just my thoughts on life, love, and the pursuit of Jesus.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Abundant Life

Sorry, all my faithful blog readers :), that I’ve been gone so long.

I’ve been thinking a lot about so many things, yet struggling to find the time to write them all down. So today I’m going to focus on the idea of ‘abundant living’.

This has been borne out of many conversations over the past 2 weeks – at work, at church, and with friends/family. What does it truly mean to have abundant life in Jesus?

I’m pretty sure it comes down to the heart and to character. Some people would say that for a woman, an abundant life in Jesus happens when she is married, has children to serve, and leads a Bible Study group at church. (how cliche is that?) And for a guy, perhaps it’s found in a stable career, a loving wife to pack lunches every day, and children to provide for.

But I disagree. I believe that those things can happen IN an abundant life, but that they don’t dictate an abundant life.

Rather, I believe that abundant life comes down to things such as:
1) Do you find yourself in communion and relationship with Jesus?
2) Are you constantly pursuing growth and forward motion, instead of settling for complacency?
3) Are you as happy alone as you are with people? Or for some of us (hello, introverts!) are you as happy with people as you are alone?
4) Do you find joy in the smallest things and the helping of people?

For me, it comes down to characteristics more than circumstances.

I know many people who are married who certainly do not have an abundant life, and wonder why on earth they don’t. They wonder what it will take. I know others who are married who are going through tough things with jobs and children and infertility and disease, who have an abundant life because of their heart and character and outlook.

I suppose this is on my mind because I’m struggling with some ‘career’ stuff. And work is a big part of my life…and a part of me feels a need to prove that I’m doing OK by having a job I love. By knowing I’m right where God wants me AND why he wants me there.

Yet right now, I don't feel that. I don't feel as though I have any clarity. And for some people surrounding me, it might say to them that my life isn't 'full' if I don't have a good sense of future direction.

However, I don’t believe this. And I don't believe that lack of clear career direction should stop me from having an abundant life. In fact, I believe that many times joyful abundance comes out of lack, ironically enough. I’m choosing to find abundance in doing a job well done, learning through the ‘place’ God has me in, serving my high school girls well, and loving my bf well.

So maybe in summary I’m saying that attitude has a big impact on living an abundant life?

Would love your thoughts…


  • At 5:42 AM, Blogger Alissa said…

    It's kinda creepy that you, me, and Nate all wrote about abundant life within days of each other. Maybe it was Mark's sermon on Sunday??

    Anyway, we all sort of said different things, but all of answers still did not (really COULD NOT) leave God out of it, and in fact put Him first. Nate said abundant life is taking a risk for Jesus. You seem to embody abundance in the quality of relationships, first with God,then with others, and finally with ourselves. I said abundant life is in trusting God.

    I think we're all right. For a Jesus follower, abundant life is impossible unless we we're in a close relationship with Him.

  • At 7:50 AM, Blogger Melinda said…


    Wow, that IS kinda creepy! But I think you're right - it was inspired by Mark's sermon at LifeLine.

    To be honest, that started it for me and then I got an email letter about the website/group of people behind that advent conspiracy movement, and then bam! this blog.

    I, too, think we're all right. I guess to me, it comes down to a constant chasing. It's the pursuit of finding that abundant life that gives it. The moment we stop, and become complacent, life gets filled with other 'things' that do not truly give life.


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