Jesus famously offered his disciples life ‘to the full’ (John 10:10). This has also been translated as life ‘in all its fullness’ and life ‘more abundantly’. But what does it mean to have an abundant life? Gideon Heugh reflects the link between Jesus’ extraordinary statement and our relationship to the world around us.
How alive are you?
Jesus famously offered his disciples life ‘to the full’ (John 10:10). This has also been translated as life ‘in all its fullness’ and life ‘more abundantly’.
If it’s possible to have life to the full, it also must be possible to have a life that isn’t full. Life, but less abundantly.
Perhaps it’s possible to have a life that’s closer to empty than full. In fact, I’m pretty sure that I’ve felt like that at times during my life. Maybe you have as well.
So how do we make sure that our lives are abundant – that we are fully alive?
The key lies in our relationships, and in the one who restores them.
At the heart of a broken world there are broken relationships. In a life that seems less than full, this is one of the first things we should look to. And this doesn’t just mean relationships with other people. For an abundant life, we need to look to our relationships with God, with creation, and with ourselves – as well as with others.
Jesus is able to offer life to the full because he is able to bring harmony to all these things. ‘Through him all things were made’ (John 1:3), and through him all things are remade: he is the great healer and restorer, the one who is ‘making everything new.’ (Revelation 21:5)
This is why we at Tearfund are so passionate about working through the local church. We know that it is the restoration of relationships that will enable people to lift themselves out of poverty.
This Lent, we will be taking a deep dive into these themes in our free devotional. It’s called ‘Alive’, and it's full of reflections, prayers and poems that will help us to realign our relationships and re-wonder our hearts. We can’t wait to share it with you.
I wish you a blessed Lent, and a life that shines with the fullness of Christ.
A prayer of preparation for Lent
This Lent –
Repair my relationships,
Renew my heart,
Restore my hope,
Revitalise my spirit,
Return my whole being to you.
In your precious name,