Thursday, July 26, 2012

Living the Abundant Life in the Lord

Forty years old was I when Moses the servant of the Lord sent me from Kadeshbarnea to espy out the land; and I brought him word again as it was in mine heart.  Nevertheless my brethren that went up with me made the heart of the people melt: but I wholly followed the Lord my God…10 And now, behold, the Lord hath kept me alive, as he said, these forty and five years, even since the Lord spake this word unto Moses, while the children of Israel wandered in the wilderness: and now, lo, I am this day fourscore and five years old.  11 As yet I am as strong this day as I was in the day that Moses sent me: as my strength was then, even so is my strength now, for war, both to go out, and to come in.  -Joshua 14: 7, 8, 10, 11 (KJV)

I was concerned after my last blog entry that some of you may have gotten the impression that my father had passed away.  I apologize if I conveyed this.  I did not mean to speak of dad in the past tense.  My father is alive, living with my mom in Ohio, and doing exceptionally well for 87 years old.  I can only hope that if I reach such advanced years that I too will enjoy such good health and quality of life.

When I think of people who have reached what we would refer to as elderly, I consider Caleb of the Old Testament.  Caleb was 40 when Moses selected him as one of the twelve spies to search out the Promised Land.  45 years later the people of Israel were ready to finish the task of taking and settling in the Promised Land, and Caleb, then 85, spoke of the vitality with which the Lord had blessed him.  What I sense Caleb was communicating was this; I am now 85 and I am just as fit as I was in my 40’s, so give me a sword and lets’ show these Canaanites a thing or two.  That is loosely translated, yet that is the gist of it.  He was willing to take on a challenge many younger men would have avoided.

I love this no quit, go forward, never stop growing, and never stop fighting attitude Caleb displayed.  To sit down and do nothing will result in a stagnant, dull, and hollow life.  To live the abundant life to which Jesus Christ has called us involves rising up and going forward over the long haul of life.  Like Caleb, do not fear taking on new challenges and new adventures.  Serving the Lord is a blessing in which we continue to grow in the knowledge and grace of Christ.  God is calling His followers to rise up in faith and walk forward with a renewed sense of Christ’s power.  Regardless of whether you are 20 or 80, the Lord has a unique plan for your life.  Settle for nothing less than the fullness of God’s grace in Jesus Christ.  Stop surviving and start living the abundant life in Christ today.

Now is the time and today is the day.  It is a big world out there with spiritual needs all around.  The Lord is calling us to shine His light in a world darkened by sin and evil.  So, what are you waiting for?  Get up and get going – in Jesus’ name.