Thursday, February 23, 2012

To Live

Recently I asked myself this question: "Am I truly living or just existing?"

Existing is a cycle of moving from one meal to the next, one night to the next or one weekend to the next. This state of "existing" is ruled by deadlines, catch up and exhaustion. Sound familiar? Unfortunately it is the state I find myself in more often than not as I struggle to keep up with a demanding college schedule. When I am only existing, life becomes more of a wrestling match than the victorious walk of faith I desire. When I just exist I am letting life pick me up by the tail and drag me around. It is like doing the doggy paddle in the ocean of life instead of the butterfly stroke; the main goal having degenerated to just staying alive rather than increasing strength or speed.

Living, on the other hand, is altogether different. Truly living means grabbing the present with both hands and expecting great things. It is more than achieving personal well-being or success. We are told "higher than the highest human thought can reach is God's ideal for His children". He created us to live, truly live. God is the essence and origin of real "life" and we are told in John 10:10 that He desires us to have it "more abundantly"! When in a state of simply existing it is difficult to enjoy God's presence, overcome evil with good or be straining toward our high calling. God created us to live extraordinarily. Only God can take a person from a pathetic state of existing and give them abundant life. Our part is to cooperate.

I wish I had been a better cooperator in the past. My habit has been to lay down and let life run right over. I'm tired of having proverbial "tire tracks" on my back. If there was ever a time to start really living I think it is now,... right now. Thus begins my own mini-series called "To Live" in which I will look for ways I can cooperate with God in living excellently for Him. It will document practical things I explore in my journey to extraordinary living. I hope to evaluate every area of life with an eye single for God's glory. Although it will be primarily for my own growth and accountability, I do hope anyone reading will be inspire to continue their own journey to living excellently and extraordinarily for God.

Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

~Philippians 3:13,14



I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,
When all at once I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils;
Beside the lake, beneath the trees,
Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine
And twinkle on the milky way,
They stretched in never-ending line
Along the margin of a bay:
Ten thousand saw I at a glance,
Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they
Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:
A poet could not but be gay,
In such a jocund company:
I gazed--and gazed--but little thought
What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie
In vacant or in pensive mood,
They flash upon that inward eye
Which is the bliss of solitude;
And then my heart with pleasure fills,
And dances with the daffodils.

by William Wordsworth