There have been times in my Christian walk when I have asked the question, "Is that all there is?" You probably remember the popular song with this thought in its lyrics…
And when I was 12 years old, my father took me to a circus, the greatest show on earth.
There were clowns and elephants and dancing bears.
And a beautiful lady in pink tights flew high above our heads.
And so I sat there watching the marvelous spectacle.
I had the feeling that something was missing.
I don't know what, but when it was over,
I said to myself, "is that all there is to a circus?
Is that all there is, is that all there is
If that's all there is my friends, then let's keep dancing
Let's break out the booze and have a ball
If that's all there is
Recently I was at a church meeting with a group of church planters and I asked the leader, why is it at some point one asks the question, "Is that all there is?" I know I have asked the question more times than I can remember. His thought was for some our Spirit walk toward maturity is much like becoming middle age. We have experienced it all and the new is no longer new. I think that is true for many. I also think it is a mean trap with a strong jaw and rusty teeth.
Internalizing the question, "Is that all there is to my relationship with God?" always comes at a time in my life when I don't really need God. The going is smooth. I'm getting my ticket punched at church. Everyone sees me as Spiritually significant. My bills are paid. Everyone is healthy. My career path looks solid. My kids soccer team is winner. My wife loves me and my dog adores me. Life is good.
Contrast "Life is good" with a terminal illness, my wife has run off with another man and I have lost my job. Suddenly, I need God. I need a deeper relationship. Now my line is, "God. Is that all there is? If so, I am going to die. Please God. Help me! Show me your power. Revive me oh God!" God becomes very significant, but His ear might not be significantly inclined toward me. He might be leading me toward that place of realizing there is more to my walk and He desires to answer the question, "Is that all there is?"
I think it is natural to ask the question, "Is that all there is?" I think it is SUPERNATURAL to appreciate there is always more and to thank God when He allows circumstance in your life that brings more of Him to you.
So I sincerely mean it when I say, the next time you receive a beating, say, "Thank you Jesus! Show me more!" I believe that is the attitude and words Paul would have cried out! I also believe the depth of your love for God and the original question, "Is that all there is?" will seem foolish…
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