Thrive: Plenty

Sunday’s Scripture ~ Ezekiel 47:6-12

When Andrew and I first started dating we did not have very much money; so, our date nights were pretty simple: dinner at home (Thanks Mom, Dad, Dale and Bill!) and a movie. Sometimes we would splurge and head to a Blockbuster (now I am really dating myself!) so we could watch something outside of our normal repertoire. What was (is) our normal movie fare? Animated Children’s Movies. The more singing the better.

At one time we practically had The Prince of Egypt memorized – every line and every chorus. One song from that film in particular resonates quite profoundly with me as I marinate on our Scripture text for this week. Feeling down on himself, his circumstance, and his life, Moses mopes. His burden and disappointment weights his brow as well as his shoulders. To encourage Moses, his father-in-law Jethro sings, “Through Heaven’s Eyes.”

As a guide and mentor Jethro challenges Moses’ assumptions about himself and about his ability to thrive in the midst of his difficult circumstances. He sings, “So how do you measure the worth of a man? In wealth or strength or size? In how much he gained or how much he gave? The answer will come, the answer will come to him who tries to look at his life through heaven’s eyes!”

In how much he gained or how much he gave…that is a beautiful description of the word plenty. Do we measure our lives in the blessings we have received and continue receiving from our God? Do we measure our lives in the blessings God has led and continues leading us to pour out on others? I do not think this is an either/or scenario. This is absolutely a both/and.

In how much he gained or how much he gave – that sounds to me like the most abundant life. And I believe that is the sort of life that God desires for us. We, like Moses, may not think that we are worthy of such a life because of present circumstances or past decisions. That sort of thinking needs to be abandoned. That sort of thinking needs to stop. That sort of thinking begs for transformation like that which flows out of God’s holy temple and down God’s holy mountain bringing life and plenty wherever it goes.

If you are struggling, hurting, scared, or lost, and seeking hope or a new direction, I encourage you to look for the plenty in your life. What have you gained? What have you given? Consider these questions and give thanks. Look at your life through heaven’s eyes and you will see where and how you thrive.

Prayer: “I exalt you, Lord, because you pulled me up; you didn’t let my enemies celebrate over me. Lord, my God, I cried out to you for help, and you healed me. Lord, you brought me up from the grave, brought me back to life from among those going down to the pit. You who are faithful to the Lord, sing praises to him; give thanks to his holy name! His anger lasts for only a second, but his favor lasts a lifetime. Weeping may stay all night, but by morning, joy!”* We wait for your joy, O Lord. We pray for the morning in our longest nights and we celebrate how you are breaking the night before our eyes. We love you, Lord. Amen. 

*Psalm 30:1-5.