I found an interesting essay about the abundant life on this page on Quest For Meaning (a Unitarian online spiritual meeting place, which features streaming worship on Sunday evenings).
I found this segment appealed to my mind:
“…it struck me that the creek, in its careless fullness, in its unceasing abundance, is a kind of model for the ceaseless creative energy of the universe, which is also pouring out and over us all the time, whether we see it or not. So I go back to the creek every year to remember; to remind myself that we stand always in the flow, that the waters of life are washing over us in a springtime torrent every day we live.”
This reminded me of a couple of things I’ve heard from Christian teachers, like Bishop John Shelby Spong:
I like that sink in the basement analogy, with the water overflowing.
In the Gospel of St. John, Jesus says that he has but one purpose in coming into this world, and Bishop Spong addresses that here:
“…that you might have life, and have it abundantly.”
What a dizzying idea, when you think on it. Sometimes I wish more Christian preachers would focus on this passage from St. John, because it’s a lot more encouraging than the ones they usually focus on, talking about sin and whatnot. I hardly think that Jesus’ purpose in coming to this life was to yell at people and tell them how awful they are and how miserable they are and how they should be constantly crawling on their bellies in abject shame, etc etc etc. I don’t think he would have given his life for THAT.
Let us find encouragement here. Let us walk in light and joy and abundance. Let us also share this joy generously, let us love wastefully. Sometimes it is hard, but that doesn’t mean it’s not a worthwhile endeavor.