I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.” John 10:10
It’s not for everyone…and I didn’t think it was for me. You see, several years ago my wife Judy and I decided to take the plunge and go on a cruise. I always wrote cruises off because the thought of being in that small of an area with 4,000 of my closest friends just didn’t sound appealing. Well, for whatever reason, I finally said yes, and I am so glad that I did. We had a great time. If you regularly read Grits, you know we love to travel. Well, take that, plus good food and entertainment and the fact that somehow it just didn’t seem crowded and well, it was fun.
I had always heard that the food was plentiful and incredible, and it really was. All you wanted, when you wanted and all included. When you bought your ticket, all the perks were thrown in and I was determined to make sure I took advantage of them all. They say the average person gains like five pounds on a cruise and I am pretty sure I can testify to that.
Now let me ask you question. Wouldn’t it have been crazy if I had chosen not to take advantage of all that had already been paid for? Wouldn’t it have been crazy if I had bought cans of sardines and cases of crackers on board to eat instead? Well trust me, it would have. The crazy part is that too often we ignore the wonderful blessings that God gives us as His children.
I received an email years ago and it told how Bill Bright, a great teacher and leader, used to tell the story of a man who carefully saved his money until he was finally able to travel on a beautiful cruise ship. It was all he could do just to save enough to buy his ticket. Thinking he wouldn’t have enough money to buy meals in the ship’s fine dining room, he decided to take along some cheese and crackers for food.
For several days he sat in his cabin, watching the stewards go by with carts full of luscious lobster, prime rib, fresh fruits, and vegetables. Finally, he couldn’t stand it any longer. He reached out and grabbed one of the stewards by the arm and begged him for a plate of food. “Please, help me. I’ll go to work; I’ll scrub the deck. I’ll do anything to get something to eat. My cheese and crackers are turning stale, and I’m starving to death.”
“But, sir,” the steward replied, “don’t you know? Your food comes with your ticket.”
Sadly, many Christians live their life the way this man did on the cruise ship. Rather than embracing and receiving all that God has for them they become satisfied with “cheese and crackers,” living off the scarcity of the world when they could be dining on steak and baked potatoes. Either out of stubbornness or just a lack of knowledge, they don’t allow the Holy Spirit to take control of their lives and produce the luscious fruit of the Spirit–love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. They choose spiritual poverty over abundant life and scarcity over the joy of enjoying the abundance of their Dearest Daddy.
I’ve discovered that it is too easy to slip into a scarcity mindset when God wants us to have such much more. And, no, I’m not speaking of things. Things are just things. I am speaking of the richness of knowing Creator God—up close and personal. Too often I’ve been satisfied at times with the bare bones of salvation—a hope of heaven for sure but the rest of the time just walking into walls in this life—afraid and seemingly alone. The best day of your life is the day you trust Jesus and second best…well, it is finally figuring out that He is with you and me and will be with us all the way. It is figuring out, and believing, that…He’s got this. Bro. Dewayne