"10The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full."
I like the King James version best when instead of "to the full" it says, "and have it more abundantly"
As Americans we live in total abundance. Abundance of wealth, joy, friends, education, politics, opinions, freedoms, choices, etc. You name it and we have more than most of the world.
So why not take the abundance of what God wants to give. Keep reading because I don't want to be misunderstood. I'm not talking about asking God for wealth and treating him like the Genie in the bottle. I'm talking about grasping what Jesus is giving his sheep...life abundant! Sometimes that will look like earthly blessings, but the truth about abundant life is that it looks more like Jesus! Read the gospels again and pay attention to the life Jesus had. He had no place to lay his head, his hometown hated him, people followed him only for what they could get from him, he was constantly exhausted, his best friends never got him, nor believed him, and in the end he was found guilty of a crime he didn't commit and was tortured till dead.
None of those are on my checklist of abundance and yet Jesus is not only offering that life to us, he is fighting off the thief so that we will take it. Because whether we choose the gated community with the million dollar home or we choose the cardboard sign and the street curb Jesus is holding out a radical life that here on earth takes more than it gives, but in heaven gives all that has ever been missing and fulfills all the empty we have ever felt. I live in the tension of what I want and what Jesus calls me too. I know you do too! That's why it's a journey and not a contest!
Today I pray that I find the abundant life of Jesus rather than seeking what the thief hunts for that only brings emptiness in the end.
Give me Jesus and life more abundantly!