By: LuAnn Edwards
Are you filled with the peace of God? Are you overflowing with joy and abounding in love? When we abide in Christ, He lives through us and we bear His fruit. I believe this is the abundant life Jesus talks about in John 10:10.
The Christian life is not just an adequate life; it is full of blessings – God blessing us and us blessing others.
When we allow Him to lead us and we rely upon Him with complete trust, He will work through us. “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me” (Gal. 2:20a). In addition, each one of us is a new creation in Christ. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!” (2 Cor. 5:17). No longer should we live in the past or the ways of our past. We should now live for Christ and desire a deeper, personal relationship with Him.
An abundant life comes as a result of abiding in Christ so we will bear fruit. To abide in Christ means we completely surrender ourselves to Him and walk in obedience. We bear fruit as we continue in our daily walk with Christ. This daily walk should be one of personal commitment and getting to know Him better through prayer and Bible study. “This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples” (John 15:8). Bearing fruit, such as peace, joy and love, honors the Lord and brings gladness to our hearts.
Peace abides in us if we know Jesus as our Savior and Lord. In John 14:27a Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.” Jesus has personally given us this gift; He is our peace! Peace is a special place of knowing He is always present, along with believing He is working all things together for our good. “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him…” (Romans 15:13a).
An abundant life is filled with joy.
When others see this joy in us, they long for it too. “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” (Phil. 4:4).We should always be joyful, for the joy of the Lord gives us strength (Neh. 8:10). Joy also comes through loving others.
In 1 John 4:11-12 we read, “Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another. No one has ever seen God; but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is made complete in us.” Our love shines outward as we deny ourselves and our selfish desires and put others first. “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others” (Phil. 2:3-4). These verses portray a beautiful picture of love.
An abundant life is a life growing in Christ. It is a life dedicated to prayer and gaining knowledge through His Word. Through this walk of surrender, trust and obedience, Christ richly fills us with His peace, and we experience overflowing joy and abounding love.