Saturday, August 5, 2017

Thank God for Life and then you’ll Live

GOD has given us one thing for which we could never repay. Life. Our lives.
This is a Note to Self (read as yours at your discretion and peril):
Does it not seem strange to you, in your bitterness and complaints, that you expect more from God — because He’s God — than you should? He gave you your life. He gives you life. Would it not be more appropriate, more just, to praise Him for the air you have in your lungs right now? To thank Him for those thinking abilities that you use to besmirch His holy name when things don’t go right for you? To revere Him for those senses you use apart from His will? To laud Him for the cravings of goodness that you oft let so casually go awry?
If God owes us anything, and let’s be certain, He does not, would it not be better to thank Him for that thing He gave us our lifetime ago? Do we not owe Him that debt?
From where does life — the power to live — come?
Consider these poignant Scriptures.
“Are you seeking great things for yourself? Don’t do it! I will bring great disaster upon all these people; but I will give you your life as a reward wherever you go. I, the Lord, have spoken!”
— Jeremiah 45:5 (NLT, italics added)
This passage commends us not to join crooked enterprises for our own gain. God will bring great disaster on them and we’ll be implicated for our compromise. No, it would be best not to seek great things for yourself. God is giving to me my life as a reward for the living, for His purpose, as I refuse to enter into wanton idolatry.
“Behold, [Satan], all that Job has is in your hand. Only against him do not stretch out your hand.”
— Job 1:12 (ESV, italics added)
The theology here is problematic, but it is something we do well to accept. Evil will seek to corral us, but God will not allow evil to hurt us physically, protecting our lives. But every other form of suffering is possible in this life.
These Scriptures in unison herald one classic truth: God gives life; He saves, protects, and rewards us with life.
Being summarily happy having your life, and needing nothing else to satisfy you, means there is but one remaining conundrumdeath. But with faith in Christ there is both the hope in this life — a purpose to live for — and in eternity beyond this life indeed to stretch toward. We’re laden with hope that ought to produce peace and overflow us with joy.
You have been divinely appointed to live your life. You have been dropped from eternity — or, if you believe otherwise, somewhere foreign to this physical realm (let’s not get hung up on theology) — into your life. It is yours. God gave it to you for you, and, in that way, for His glory, as you live it fully in accord with His wish for you.
So, from where does life come? From God, of course. From God, for you. It is His gift to you, to live. Will you take it? It is, after all, your responsibility. Nobody but you can accept responsibility for it. It’s up to you.
Will you take this life that He gave you, not judging it, not looking through it nor hating it for any reason?
Will you go now, making it your own, taking it with both hands, walking with it with both feet, making the most of the life you have?
Will you agree today to accept your life as it was and has been given? Every moment of pain and fury, accepting every chastisement, as good and bountiful, as productive for the time before you now.
Will you?
If so, then hear the Holy Spirit utter these words of life into your soul:
Your life is yours, my son / daughter.
Be you, today, and Live.
And, importantly, look to life for nothing else but ME.
Simply live.

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