Life is simple
Jane is so busy, so loaded down with cares. She has money problems and domestic problems. And she’s not getting any younger!
John is so miserable, in his job and marriage. Why is life so bad to him? He is losing sleep, losing his health and losing the will to carry on.
Do you know people like Jane or John? Can you yourself identify with them to any extent? Do you have problems and challenges in life that are getting on top of you?
Life seems so hard, so complicated. There are relationships to maintain and relationships to repair. There are bills to be paid; there are things in the house crying out to be done. There seems no time to plan for the future.
You feel like the man trying to keep ten plates twirling on their long poles, and you’re afraid one or more of the plates will soon crash to the ground. Things are spinning out of control!
But, basically life is simple. Our life is like a jigsaw puzzle with one centre piece missing. But let God take his rightful place and fill that big empty space, and then keep to his commands or parameters (the frame of the jigsaw puzzle) and we will find a true, lasting, satisfying purpose and joy in life.
When we become a Christian through faith in Jesus Christ and receive his pardon for our sins, the Holy Spirit enters us and starts to produce in us love, joy and peace, even in the worst of times.
She was hassled, hot and angry. She had fourteen men to feed and the cooking pots were spilling over. Everything was getting out of control.
Suddenly her patience snapped and she stormed up to the Creator of the universe and in desperation spluttered, ‘Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!’
Fancy complaining like that to the Son of God! Fancy the Lord Jesus letting himself be spoken to like that! Yet his answer seems to have been a gentle, loving rebuke: ‘Martha, Martha, you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her’ (Luke 10:40-42).
All things considered, life is fundamentally simple. Only one thing is essential. Are we like Mary? Do we sit at the feet of Jesus and drink in his words, listen to his teaching, heed his orders, and perhaps ask him questions?
Is it our top priority to have fellowship with the Lord Jesus? To love him, who is love, with all our heart, soul, mind and strength?
The apostle Paul wrote, ‘… one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining towards what is ahead, I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenwards in Christ Jesus’ (Philippians 3:13-14).
Despite all his enemies — the sinful world all around him, his old sinful nature inside him, and Satan, the usurping angel, near him, he aimed to put Jesus first in his life. Yes, of course life is complex, but it becomes basically simple if we are learning to trust Jesus and follow in his steps.
After all, there is only one God, though he is in three persons (Matthew 28:19). There is only one thing to seek first in life, and that is God’s kingdom and his righteousness (Matthew 6:33).
There is only one way to salvation, and that is through Christ, who is the way, the truth and the life (John 14:6). And there is only one day on which to be saved, and that is now — today (2 Corinthians 6:2).
Jane and John
Jesus spoke of two contrasting roads. There is the small gate and the narrow road that leads to life; and the wide gate and wide road that leads to destruction (Matthew 7:13-14).
Jesus spoke of only two final destinations, heaven and hell. And the apostle John wrote of two opposite spiritual states: ‘Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on him’ (John 3:36).
What happened to Jane and John? Jane was pointed by a friend’s word and example of life to the Lord Jesus Christ and became a Christian.
She began to pray and study the Bible and attend a Christ-centred church and tell others about Jesus. John, tragically, is not yet a Christian. Are you a Jane or a John?