Part 3: Life Fulfilled

We desperately want a fulfilled life. Yes, all of us. Without exception.Fulfilled-Life

There is nothing inherently wrong in desiring a fulfilled life. The problem is when we think that having plenty of money, a secured job, or a nice family can give us fulfillment. We strive to be a good parent, a loving spouse, or a more committed church member thinking that if we just do our best, we can find the fulfillment we are desperately looking for.And, or course, we realize sooner or later that we’re wrong. If by having the things we have right now or by doing the things that we do right now can bring us ultimate fulfillment, then Jesus’ coming is not necessary. But he himself tells us, “I have come that you may have life and have it to the full” (John 10:10).God sent Jesus to die on the cross that we might have life. Jesus rose from the dead to tell us, “See, I have fulfilled the Law, that your life may find its fulfillment through me and in me.” Our ultimate fulfillment comes not from the blessings that flow from our relationship with Jesus but from the Blessing that is Jesus himself. Jesus prayed to the Father, “This is eternal life (that is, the only ultimately fulfilling and satisfying life), that they may know you and Jesus Christ whom you have sent” (John 17:3).God taught me this very important lesson during the few days of taking a leave from pastoral and teaching responsibilities. After my wife gave birth to our second son, I wanted to go back to ministry immediately. I find my heart very stubborn during that time. My wife knew that.

Yes, I’m happy with our new son. But this joy was immediately crushed by the stress of dealing with monotonous household chores and of the difficulty of making adjustments in our family dynamics.

God revealed to me the problem of my own heart. I was longing for what I do in the ministry because it brings me fulfillment. As a gracious reminder, God has taught me that I cannot find ultimate fulfillment in the ministry. I can’t even find it in my family. I can find it in Jesus, only in Jesus.

That is why one Thursday evening, a very ordinary one, while washing the dishes (not while preaching or leading the church), I prayed, “I love you, Jesus.” That same night, after tucking my eldest son to bed, I wrote in my journal:

I just can’t believe what happened tonight. I was washing the dishes and I suddenly told Jesus, without planning or premeditation, “I love you, Jesus.” Well, that was unusual for me. I love him, yes. But part of my heart problem is expressing that devotion to him. I know it was from the Spirit. Oh, what joy, what glory this was. It was such a glorious few seconds of joy and delight in my Lord. Oh, how I long for this not to end. I want to want to love him all of my days. Whatever I’m doing I will do because I love you, Jesus, and primarily because you love me first. May all those around me, my wife, my kids, my church, my neighbors, and my friends all love you although they don’t see you, that they may feel that you are real and you are present and there is no other love in this world more satisfying than yours.

This is an excerpt from part 3 of the sermon series The Story of Jesus based on the story of Luke 2:21-52. I encourage you to listen to this sermon. You can also read and download this sermon. I also urge you to share this message to your friends.

Listen…

Note: To download the audio (in mp3), click the “menu” button on the bottom right corner of the sermon player.

Listen with presentation…

Read sermon notes: 

Part 02 - Great JoyPart 01 - Promise FulfilledA True Story (Series Introduction)


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