In the gospel of John chapter ten, Jesus states that the devil is a thief and he comes to steal, kill and destroy the lives of believers. But He contrasts that doom and gloom with this promise: “I have come that they may have life and that they may have it more abundantly” (John 10:10).
I love that concept of “more abundantly.” Anything that is wonderful, I want it more of it. At dessert time, I long for an abundant amount of ice cream. When friends come over for a game night, I want an abundant amount of time with them. When planning a vacation, I hope for an abundant limit on my credit card.
And when it comes to our spiritual lives, we most definitely yearn for an abundance of God’s presence and His blessing. Most of us understand the principle outlined in John 15 where we are told that we can do nothing without Him. We just plain need Him for every good work.
And that’s why the concept of the abundant life is so exciting!
That Greek adjective “abundant” means to have, or enjoy, or experience something beyond measure. It means to have more than we expected or anticipated. It can mean excessive sorrow like Paul mentions in II Cor. 2:7 or more severe punishment like the Pharisees have coming in Luke 20:47.
But that term can also mean to have something all around us, encompassing us on all sides. The mental picture of that reality might be some kind of a bubble that we can live inside. Just imagine a spiritual bubble that you and I are meant to live in.
No matter what the circumstances, our health, our income, our relationships, no matter what issues come up, we are meant to encounter them encased in the grace of God. The abundant life that Jesus prescribed is meant to buffer us in any and all situations.
That kind of life is meant to be vibrant, exciting, incredibly joy filled. Imagine bounding through life where bad stuff bounces off us, and tough experiences quickly rebound away. We easily vault over our failures and leap into the arms of Jesus.
I like that mental picture of enjoying life more abundantly. Living in that kind of spiritual bubble would empower all of us to reach out more freely and love more easily. We would feel more courageous and rebound quicker from our challenges. We might even laugh louder.
And that kind of vibrancy is the abundant life we all ought to be pursuing!