I recently brought a blender. Not a top of the line does everything for you including puree your vegetables and make your soup hot blender, I brought a $19.99 blender. It’s a personal blender, just big enough to make a one serving smoothie for myself. In deciding to buy this blender, I factored into the equation the reality that I didn’t know if I would like having smoothies for breakfast and $19.99, I decided, wasn’t really much of an investment. My decision made sense; less of an investment meant less heartache in the long run. I brought the blender, gathered the ingredients, and began making smoothies. My blender worked great, at least for the first week. Around the middle of week two during one of my morning blending sessions, the motor of the blender was whirring so fast, and got so hot, that the cup got lodged in the blender and melted a little bit. I attributed this to the blender being a little too full, and worked over the next week, to adjust the contents accordingly. However, now the blender didn’t seem to be blending as fast, and it didn't seem to blending my vegetables as smooth. During week three, the blender started spewing the contents out of it, and it didn’t seem to matter how tightly I placed the lid on it. On one occasion when this happened, I succeeded in getting smoothie all over me just before heading to church on Sunday morning to prepare for worship. I was beginning to rethink the $19.99 blender. I had wondered on more than one occasion if I should have spent a little bit more, or made an investment in a really good blender, thus saving myself some of the troubles I’d experienced over the last week. This morning, as I was making my smoothie, I successfully managed this without getting any all over myself or the counter (though not without a lot of effort), I found myself thinking about investments.
God invested in each of us when he sent his son Jesus to die for our sins. God continues to invest in us on a daily basis. Grace and mercy are extended to us, and all we have to do is be willing to receive this. What if we made this type of investment in the things of God? What if we fully invested in those around us by being fully present and in the moment? What if we fully invested in the things of God through fasting, praying, reading scripture, and participating in Bible Studies? Sadly, our investment in the things of God, is often like my investment in the blender. We want it to work for us when we want it to, but we don’t want to put a lot of effort into it. I believe a portion of this way of thinking can be directly attributed to a fear of failure. The question, “What if I get this blender and don’t use it?” is almost like asking, “What if I pray and my prayers aren’t answered?” Both questions stir up negative feelings associated with failure. 2 Timothy 1:7 reminds us that, “God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, of love, and of a sound mind.”
During this season of Lent, I encourage you to find ways to fully invest in God. John 10:10 reminds us that, “the thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy,” but that Jesus comes that we might “have life, and have it more abundantly.” The abundance of God only comes through being fully invested, through not taking the easy way out. The abundant life comes through living fully without the worry of not being good enough, holy enough, religious enough, or righteous enough. Today, I invite you to serve with your entire being that you might live an abundant life in the fullness of God.
Prayer for today: Help me God to be fully present to all those around me today. I ask in Jesus' name. AMEN! --Michelle Lewis