Jesus should be enough, but no. I need Jesus + a lot of other things. I need Jesus AND children who always obey the first time and with a happy heart. If they would just get along all of the time, that would bring me contentment. What I really need is for them to never interrupt me, never distract me, never be in my way, never be a bother.
God's grace is nice, but it's not enough. I need God's grace AND a wife who is always on the same page as me, wants the same things I want, and can read my mind. I need financial stability and certainty. I can't be happy without comfort in my life - physical, emotional, occupational. Stressful words and situations make me unhappy. I need people who like me, affirm me, and approve of me.
I need health, strength, and energy. I need everything in church to go without difficulty, conflict, or controversy. I need peace (and quiet). I need a comfortable house and a nice car. I need good weather (which is to say I need it to be warmer when it's cold and I need it to be cooler when it's hot). I need a government that doesn't serve it's own interests, but mine. I need easy access to health insurance and health care. Without these things (and others), my life simply isn't complete.
Sounds pretty bad to put it in those terms doesn't it? Of course we never would say such things, but every time I snap at my children in anger; every time I mutter a response to my wife; every time covetousness rises in my heart; every time I feel mopey about my day and how it's not going quite perfectly; every time I wish I had some part of someone else's life instead of mine; every time I think mean thoughts about someone even if I don't articulate them; every time I feel like I can't handle the situation and am going to lose it; every time I do lose it; every time I give into any sinful desire; every time I worry about what is uncertain, that's what I'm saying. In that moment, Jesus isn't enough. It's sad and ugly.
But you know what?
God's grace shown to me through Jesus is enough even for the times when by my actions I tell him he isn't enough. Not only is there all we need in Christ to be content and faithful in every circumstance and situation; there is enough in Christ to forgive us for our lack of contentment and faithfulness in those circumstances. Praise God, Jesus is enough! (Even when my actions say otherwise.)
3/3/2014 05:10:24 am
Thank you Pastor Aaron for these thoughts to pursue what pleases Jesus. This life isn't about me, it's about living by the Spirit and not gratifying the desires of the sinful nature. Gal. 5 If we are busy, serving and loving one another, for Jesus Sake, we will have less time to think about our own sinful desires or give the Devil windows of opportunity. I am working harder on saying NO to my to my flesh (sinful desires)! By God's grace , He will give me the strength I need to put to Death the old nature, more and more 'til I see him face to face!
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