I have come that you might have life and have it more abundantly! John 10:10 –10 MAY 14

Fourth Sunday Easter….Happy Mothers Day—Grace filled First Communion


I have come that you might have life and have it more abundantly!


John 10:10


I have listened intently to the voices that I have heard this past week…


And I have been left in a real quandary….I mean a certifiable perplexible dilemma…


I wonder if anything or anyone in our world is just Ok?


I have heard that we are either too tall or too short…too rich or too poor…too fast or too slow.


I have heard that my cell phone is obsolete as well as my computer even if I just bought it last week and that the wrinkles on my body can disappear if I simply inject some of the stuff that nature has decided I no longer need….


I have found out that some of us have too much hair and others too little.  I have learned that this past winter was long and harsh and that spring has been too long and cold and wet.


I have heard that the government has moved too fast on one issue and too slow on others.  I have heard that the internet is too accessible and that it is still too restricted as well.


I have heard that some people weigh too much and others too little—that some people have a green line and others ought to if they don’t.


I have learned that I have just….”Got To Have It”….and that I ought to “Just Do It”


So the dilemma is real and I don’t think it is a dilemma for only me…I bet it is for all of us as well……


And I am left with one question……


Is anyone or anything just really OK?


Wouldn’t it be awesome to just have one day of being OK?  Wonder what that would feel like? 


There are a lot of voices that seem to be speaking of scarcity…and a lot of voices of fear and deprivation….far many more of those than the voices of gratitude, serenity, peace, excitement, and just being okayness….


Jesus seems to have understood that reality as well….even without the help of the internet, tv, radio or smart phones…


It must have been the same for him?  Maybe that was the condition to which he was speaking when he says…..I have come that you might have life and have it more abundantly!


It is so easy for me to step into the stream of negativity, doubt, fear, resentment and just general not-okayness…..


It is so easy to say…I don’t have enough time, energy, resources…what ever….and much more challenging to simply say….wow I am only one person, in this one place at this moment with physical, spiritual and emotional needs and I can’t do it, say it or even try to understand it all!  And maybe, just maybe that’s OK!


And it is much more challenging to try to see the positive, hope filled, excited, joyful peace that surrounds us.


I really have tried these past few days to live in the okayness….in God’s abundance and the gratitude…and it has been amazing how easy it was to slip into the negativity…


I have come that you might have life and have it more abundantly!


Our faith…this whole journey of the Spiritual life is a journey into discovering God’s grace….not God’s judgement!  Somehow many of us seem to have focused on the later instead of the former! 


The Good Shepherd….reminds us…just go through the gate….not over the top of the wall and though the briars and thorns that line the top ledge…just go through the gate…you will recognize the voice!


I wish that was what was flying at sports games…


You see my friends….we do the greatest dis-service possible to the spiritual life when we put on that life things which crush the Spirit of God….


Fear….doubt….anger…resentment….certitudes….burdens of shame….anything that crushes the human spirit is not a Godly thing….


I don’t mean to say that all of life is this glorious ubiquitous euphoria that has no challenges, trails or tribulations….nothing could be further from the truth….


But while the trials and tribulations can tempt us to believe that God isn’t present with us, that is preciesly what they try to do…to crush the joy, peace, serenity and hope of the Holy Spirit in our lives.





What voices do we listen to?  What voices to we hear?  What voices do we speak?


Advertizers know us almost better than we know ourselves….sometimes they know how to elicit from us reactions that we don’t even realize are being called forth.


A juicy orange being cut open…the light just careening off of the droplets as the orange is sliced open and conveniently dropped on a table so that the juices just burst forth and the camera just catches them in the light…I don’t care who you are…almost everyone will feel their mouth water and the thought of a glass of nice cool orange juice will float across our imagination….triggering in us the sale of the product the next time you are at the store if not right then…


There are a lot of voices in our world….and it is so painfully easy to listen to the negative, scarcity ones that tell us that we and our lives are not enough.  But Jesus seems to be saying just the opposite….you are mine…I have called you by name…   


There are lots of voices….not many speak of the abundance, joy and hope of our God….but that points to the importance of community, of family, of friends…to gather with others who know and who believe that God is indeed here…that Grace is alive and active…that Jesus will always be the Good Shepherd….even through the storms of life…


Jesus won’t keep us from the trials, tribulations, tragedies and storms…but Christ will be with us through them all…calling our name and reminding us….


That he came so that we might have life and have it more abundantly….


I wonder if we can live into that abundance this week…?

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