“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” John 10:10 NIV
John 10:10 is a powerful promise and a huge claim from Jesus. Not only is He promising eternal life to those who believe in Him, but also that only He can give life ‘to the full’. I think a very common misconception of Christians is that they’re living restricted lives full of rules and regulations. I would refute that and say that I am more free than ever by following Jesus. What could be more freeing than having a loving relationship with the creator of all things? If God is God, and Jesus is who He claims to be, then it’s the most important and best news anyone will ever hear.
The area of my life where this is most obvious is in that of drinking and alcohol. Most of my weekends in 6th form would involve going out with mates and getting drunk. It was a lifestyle that I embraced because I was so eager for relationships and popularity most of all, and instead of thinking about life’s big questions it was easier to just pursue temporary fun. Ever since Jesus opened up my heart to Him I had this inescapable thought in the back of my head that I needed to stop getting drunk. Indeed Paul, a guy who wrote lots of the New Testament, implores Christians to ‘not get drunk on wine’. So I stopped drinking altogether in the summer of 2016 to prevent myself getting into situations that the Bible says doesn’t reflect how children of God should behave. Although I don’t think there is a strong biblical argument for never having any alcohol (most of my Christian mates will have a pint etc. at the pub) I think the bible is clear on drinking to an excess- something I’ve found easiest to avoid by never having that first drink. This rather drastic action has brought great freedom, not limitation to my life. I still frequent pubs with mates and have found alcohol just simply isn’t needed to socialise and build friendships. Alongside this practical shift in my life, my priorities have been drastically altered; instead of desperately seeking out relationships or popularity that wouldn’t satisfy me in the long term I’ve spent the last 22(ish) months resting on my relationship with Christ which is the only thing that can truly bring life ‘to the full’.
I am so much more content with life following Christ, rather than my own desires. Jesus has changed my life (gradually I might add) in every way. The way I think when I’m all alone, the way I act, the way I speak to others have all been transformed for the better due to Jesus making me a follower of him. It’s terrifically freeing and brings more contentment and joy than anything else I’ve experienced and I’d implore anyone reading this who hasn’t given their lives to Him to look at the evidence that surrounds Jesus- the most important man who has or will ever live- who is the only one who can truly offer a life to the full.