Genesis 2: 7, And the LORD God formed man of the dust of the ground, and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life; and man became a living being. NKJV
John 10: 10, The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly. NKJV
I find something very intriguing in what Jesus stated in John 10: 10. He said that He had come that we might have life. Maybe I'm strange, and you might agree, but weren't people already living when Jesus spoke this in their ears that day? There is as much difference between living and having life as there is between earth and heaven. Therefore, we can conclude that the only true way to experience the God-kind-of-life that Jesus was teaching about is to be included in the One who is life- Jesus.
I used the verse in Genesis 2: 7 to try and illustrate the difference between a living being and having life in Christ. When God breathed into man's nostrils, he became a living being, having breath. When Jesus breathed on the disciples shortly before His passion, He told them to receive the Holy Spirit. Through the power of the Holy Spirit, we not only receive life at that moment, but we also have eternal life. Jesus didn't stop at us having life; He desired that we have abundant life. The only way to have that kind of life is through abiding in the Vine.
Remember, we can only have a new life if we are in Christ. If we "confess" Christ, but "live" according to the world, we're not abiding in the true Vine. It doesn't matter what you and I confess if we don't follow through with obedience and the action that backs up what we say we believe. In the same way, if we don't look to Jesus and obey His will in our lives, then we deceive ourselves. We are only living; we are not walking in His life.
If you read about the pioneers of the faith such as Noah, Job, Sarah, Ruth, and the father of the faith, Abraham, you will notice that when they began walking with God, they possessed very little. However, eventually God increased them with greatness. It isn't about how much you possess, but how much of God's attributes you possess. We are required to come to know the God that we say we believe. Consequently, as we walk in faith with God, the life of God will begin to flow into our life through the Holy Spirit and bless us with God's character and characteristics.
The longer you and I walk in faith and obedience to God's will and maintain our fellowship with Him, the greater His life will increase in us. The Bible tells us that God never changes; it also teaches us that His kingdom and dominion on the earth are always increasing. Even so, how can it increase on the earth if it's not done through His people, who dwell on the earth? You are a people...this tells me you are a very good candidate for the life of God to shine through so that He can show the world His greatness in an earthen vessel.
Do you want to shine for God today? Do you want to be great for God today? A thousand-mile journey begins with the first step. If you're accustomed to just existing and getting by, then get better connected to the Vine and let His life and glory begin to increase both, you and your family. You can do all things through Christ, who strengthens you, but you must be willing to let His strength flow through you. It's all a matter of the heart.
Abiding in the Vine,
Pastor Asa Dockery