Living Life to the Full | Letters in Lockdown #2

The word ‘zoom’ has a whole new meaning, we’re getting savvy with booking online shopping slots, and we could probably measure out exactly 2 metres by eye. The novelty and the shock of change is wearing off and we’re now softening the soles of this ‘new normal’. 

‘New normal’ – Oh, if I had a pound for every time that phrase has been used in the media. It’s a funny one really. We’re all living it, but we’re simultaneously searching for it. We are having to adapt to the changes that we are facing and trying to find at least a smidgen of normality there. But, I’ve been thinking and reflecting over the past I-have-no-idea-how-many-weeks-because-the-days-just-roll-into-one-can-someone-please-tell-me-what-day-it-is: Was our existence in a pre-coronavirus society ever really that ‘normal’? I saw this quote the other week and it stuck with me so I thought I’d share…

‘We will not go back to normal. Normal never was. Our pre-corona existence was not normal other than we normalised greed, inequity, exhaustion, depletion, extraction, disconnections, confusion, rage, hoarding, hate and lack. We should not long to return, my friends. We are being given the opportunity to stitch a new garment. One that fits all of humanity and nature’ (Sonya Renee Taylor)

“Woah, woah, wooooah – who invited Negative Nancy?!” You ask. I hear you, I hear you. But I do think that we all, in our heart of hearts, can recognise some truth in this.

Normalisation of lack particularly stands out to me. As a society, we’ve become so used to never being satisfied and content with what we have and always desiring after more because more is so readily available. The benchmark for satisfaction has been set so high, and it continues to creep its way up as we are constantly told that we do not have enough. So we then over consume, in whatever form that takes, because our lives become like a bucket with a whole in it; impossible to fill. 

How exhausting! Is that really what life is? 

The good news is that it doesn’t have to be. When Jesus lived on the earth – God in human form – he spent time with people, showing them what it means to truly live. He came to draw us – humans, God’s creation – back to the heart of God, back to where we were created to dwell (give my last blogpost a read HERE if you’d like to understand this more). In John 10:10, we read that He came so that we may have life, and have it to the FULL. In other words, Jesus came armed with duct tape to patch up the bucket of your life so that you CAN find full life. More than that, you can enjoy a life that is full to overflowing!

Thing is, we’ve been searching for satisfaction in the wrong places. Satisfaction in anything else but God is temporary. Just like when we eat, we soon become hungry again. But satisfaction in Jesus endures; from life on earth and into eternity. Jesus declared that He is the ‘bread of life’ and that whoever comes to Him will never go hungry (John 6:35). He doesn’t go stale. He doesn’t go mouldy. He always satisfies.

It’s not to say that the physical ‘bread’ of this life – personal security, money, employment, food, relationships, health, clothing etc – is bad. In fact, God loves to bless us with these things. But that longing that we feel, the weight of ‘lack’ that we carry on our shoulders, can only be remedied when we fix our eyes on the Giver instead of the gift. The gift is good, but the Giver is great. And when we seek after His heart, it changes our perspective. It changes our purpose. 

And the invitation to know Him is so freely available to everyone. ‘Who? What? Me?’ Yes, YOU! All you have to do is RSVP. 

If you’re not sure how to respond, why don’t you give ‘The Vow’ by Cody Carnes a listen. I’ve been listening to it this week and I think the words are quite apt. You don’t have to do anything. Just let the lyrics wash over you and rest in the knowledge that in Him, all your desires are fulfilled, through Him, all your needs are met, and because of Him, you can live life to the full. 

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