“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10
Leo Tolstoy was a Russian writer who is considered to be one of the greatest authors of all time. He wrote the classic, War and Peace. In the middle of his life, he faced a great crisis and wrote these words to describe it: ”My question – that which at the age of 50 brought me to the verge of suicide – was the simplest of questions lying in the soul of every man…It is a question without an answer to which one cannot live. It was, ‘What will come of what I am doing today or tomorrow? What will come of my whole life? Why should I live?’”
I believe Tolstoy was correct…that this question hides in the heart of each and every human being. The conscious whispers, “Is there any meaning in my life that death will not destroy?” This is not a question that most of us ponder on a daily basis. But at some point, in the deepest part of who we are, we all wonder about the difference our lives will make. We all secretly worry that there isn’t any real meaning to how we spend our days, months, and years. And we fear that when we die, there will be no lasting legacy. Each and every one of us longs for a life of purpose.
I believe there is more to life than just living. There is life beyond the daily responsibilities that seem to control our calendars…and our lives. The reason I know this is true is because of the words found in John 10:10. Jesus, the man who – by any account – lived the most meaningful, purpose-filled, productive, and impactful life in all of history, spoke these words. “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they (that’s you and me) may have life, and have it to the full.” In this verse two lives stand in contrast. The first is a life that has been ravaged by the enemy – Satan – who comes to destroy the joyful and fulfilling life that God intended for every person He created. This destruction started way back in Eden with that first bite of the forbidden fruit; and it has continued throughout human history. But something else also started back in that Garden…the promise of a Savior who would fully and finally defeat that enemy (Genesis 3:15).
In Christ is new life…better life. He came to give us life beyond sin and its consequences. He came to give us not only eternal life, but also abundant life while we wait for heaven. How do we get this new life? It comes by grace, through faith in Jesus Christ and His sacrifice for our sins. This Gospel is the only way to truly live, both now and forever.
Dear Father, thank you for the opportunity you've given me to use my life for your glory. Help me to not waste my life, but rather to make an impact on those around me so that they might be pointed towards You. Amen.