Be Very Much Alive - Jordan Matthews

Sometimes you don’t realize God is all you need until God’s all you’ve got. Sometimes we have to get to the end of ourselves before we are able to consider the full extent of the power of the cross. 

Maybe you grew up in church. You heard all the stories, but have you taken the time to really investigate who Jesus is? The more you do, the more you realize that this Gospel story is a story within a story within a story. There’s endless power in it! If we can spend time investigating our phones, studying the gospel of media, the gospel of technology, and the gospel of sub-gratification, we can make time to study the Gospel that counts. Take time to learn about it. 

The pandemic we’ve found ourselves in has taken away so many people’s idols. Before this, many may have thought sports cannot be touched. I’ve heard it said, “Everything in this world can be taken away, but there will always be sports.” Well, this took away not only sports, but jobs, money, movies and more. What came was an unseen enemy. No one saw it coming. And when people’s idols are stripped away, they realize that none of this lasts forever. We realize how finite life really is. 

So where does my true value lie? We know that there is only one thing that doesn’t die, and it’s found at the cross. But this eternal reward requires a laying down of your life. Just as Jesus humbled Himself and laid down His life, only when we lay down our own lives will we be able to experience the peace and purpose that’s possible with Him.

So much of our experience living in 2020 speaks to how we view life and death. With the coronavirus keeping us at home, many are finding themselves without human interaction, watching no cure come about, and feeling dead on the inside. They may be walking around, but they’re growing desperate. Many are more willing to go out and risk death in order to be able to live, because being at home feels like death to them. 

You can be alive, while being very much dead. 

When you don’t have the freedom to do what you want to do, it very much feels like you’re not living. There are many in our world, even before this pandemic struck, that have been walking around, putting on a good face, but feeling empty and lost inside. Maybe they’re ridden with guilt, shame, fear or loneliness.

In Psalm 32:3, David talks about what it feels like to keep sin hidden inside of you: “When I kept silent, my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long.” That doesn’t sound like a person living life to the fullest, does it? Jesus warns us that we often worry more about what we look like on the outside, while He is more concerned about our internal state of being. 

I want to live life to the full every day of my life. Now that things are starting to open up in our country, I want to find the best way for me to live fully for Christ, while also living to love my neighbor. If that means I don’t visit those at risk, but love them through calls or Facetime for now, I’ll do that. If that means I wear a mask when I enter certain stores or my rehab center, that’s what I’m going to do. 

God has given me life on this side of eternity, and He could come back any time. I don’t want to waste my day worrying, complaining or fearing what’s to come. 

— Jordan Matthews, NFL wide receiver 

Jordan Matthews is a regular contributor to The Increase, providing articles and opinions. Check out Jordan’s Increase profile: https://theincrease.com/author/jordan-matthews/ 

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