I had my life all planned – I would marry my high school
sweetheart after he served his time in the Navy. Or maybe we would marry sooner so I could live wherever he was stationed and travel the world with him. Then, we’d have two children, a boy and a girl, and live in a beautiful house in the suburbs with a dog, two cars, and the proverbial picket fence. My husband would support us, and I would be the happy homemaker. A perfect happily ever after.
But life doesn’t always turn out the way we thought it would.
Instead of the Navy guy, I married someone I met in college. We did have children, two boys, but the marriage didn’t last. I spent my entire adult life working outside the home, supporting my family. Then, after being a single mother for a few years, I found another wonderful husband, but he died of cancer.
So now I’m alone. No “happily ever after” here.
Well, what does that have to do with Christmas? Everybody is thinking of presents and celebrating the holidays with family, not moping about what never was.
This time of year, we rejoice in the birth of Jesus. If you’re not a religious person, that fact may not make a difference to you. But something Jesus said is relevant to everyone today. In John Chapter 9 in the Bible, Jesus healed a blind man, and some Pharisees were questioning His authority to perform miracles. He explained that he was born for a reason: “I am come that they might have life and that they might have it more abundantly.” (KJV) One translation says, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (NIV)
Live abundantly? Have life to the full? That’s a far cry from what most of us have been through. I’m not rich. I have to watch my pennies just like you. That’s not what I’d call abundant.
But maybe living abundantly doesn’t have anything to do with money. Come to think of it, my life is full even though my bank account isn’t.
This is not the story I wrote for my life, but it’s the story God wrote for me. And it’s beautiful, better than anything I could have imagined. I managed to stay employed all my adult life and retired to become a full-time writer and speaker. I can now inspire others to have a positive attitude in spite of what life has dumped on them, just like I do every day.
I have friends, family, books, and music that give me joy every day. My children are healthy, still talk to me, and have given me wonderful grandchildren. I live in beautiful Colorado, where I can see snow-covered mountains almost every day. Not to mention the Colorado Rockies and Denver Broncos for entertainment, especially when they win. And I have Hallmark Channel on TV so I can watch inspiring movies at Christmas and other times of the year.
Yes, my life is abundant. And yours can be too. Look to Jesus, the Reason for the Season this year, and ask Him to fill your life to overflowing. He’s more than willing to do just that.