Abundance is a big subject. It starts in God himself, in his person as three persons, Father, Son and Spirit. There is a richness in abundance in God that is boundless. From that abundance, we see God’s creativity of life on earth (probably elsewhere in some forms or whatever, but certainly true and abundant here).
Abundance is found on earth, but like all else in the old creation, has its limits. Which figures into human stewardship of the earth. Sadly we see some natural resources being threatened or pushed to the brink of extinction, upending or changing the balance of nature due to human greed and over consumption. While at the same time too many on earth face a day to day ordeal to survive, to get enough just to live. As the globe shrinks in size due to human ability to travel and communicate, we are all the more accountable for this problem. Though there are indeed a complexity of issues in the mix. But sometimes we make it all too complicated. We’re committed to a course in which there can be little or no turning back, or only with much difficulty. A course which does not have loving one’s neighbor as one’s self as the goal, but self-interest. At best a self-interest that preserves one’s own ability to do good.
Jesus said our lives do not consist in an abundance of possessions. But we want more and more. Not really believing the wisdom that says enough is never enough, that all is indeed vanity and meaningless in itself, apart from the Creator of all good things. While it is not wrong to be rich in this world, it is wrong to set our heart on riches. With what abundance we have, we’re called to be generous and willing to share, thus laying up treasure for the life that is truly life. We are not to hoard up wealth for ourselves, but we’re to learn how to be rich toward God, in other words good stewards of the abundance we have.
Scripture again and again speaks of God’s abundance to us, not only in material ways, but much more so in the spiritual sphere. By the Spirit from God through Christ we’re richly blessed with every spiritual, or Spirit-bestowed blessing in the heavenly realms. Yes, here and now. And we’re to come to know by God’s power just how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, to actually know this love which has no bounds, that we may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
I look at my own life all too often, and see nothing but deficit. I am empty, and just struggling at times to carry on. Where is this abundance scripture speaks about, over and over again? This reminds me of what someone said to me years and years ago in a kind of departing word, and it seemed to me with some emotion: “May the Lord deepen you, Ted.” Yes, I need the Lord’s deepening work in my life. A work that opens me up to his abundance to and through me to others, in and through Christ.
Abundance. May the Lord open us up to that life to the full, overflowing in and through Jesus, that we might be the blessing to the world we are meant to be in the heartbeat of God.