Summary: A formula for finding the abundant life
How To Live Life To The Fullest
I know that to some people, living a good life is palm trees and sandy beaches. To some people, it is grease and exhaust fumes and loud race cars. To some people living the good life means playing with your children or grandchildren and enjoying a great meal together. To some people it is the quietness of a good book. Living a good life means different things to different people.
Remember the beer advertisement a few years back where whatever situation they showed, the line was, “Ahhh, it doesn’t get any better than this”? My thought was always: Your have low expectations!
Well, this morning, I want to talk to you about God’s formula for living a good life. God designed life and so I think it would be good for us to take a look at what He says about how to live life to its fullest.
Last week, we saw Peter’s message was to love our wives, love our brothers and sisters in Christ and to love our enemies. We need to be known as a church that loves one another. John 13:35 By this will all men know you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.
Changing gears and changing directions, Peter goes back to the idea of how Christians are supposed to live in this world. He is going to re-emphasize that message of vs. 1 where we can see people be won to Christ without even saying a word—we can win them by the way we live.
Notice what vs. 10 says, (quoting Psalm 34) “If you desire life, desire love and desire good days…” Well, who wouldn’t want that? To live life to its fullest...to enjoy loving relationships with others…to have a good day – who wouldn’t want that?
I’ve always appreciated what Christ said and meant in John 10:10. He said, “The thief come s to steal and kill and destroy. But I have come that they might have life—life more abundantly.”
That’s the life God wants us to live. The problem is that many Christians live less than abundant lives. Many Christians don’t give the image that they enjoy life. Too many outsiders see Christianity as narrow, bigoted, legalistic, stiff, formalized and old.
The reason they see Christianity that way is that they see Christians that way. Christians point out their sin. Christians point out their immorality. Christians point out their liberal views. But Christians are also hypocritical. Christians are conservative. Christians don’t party like they do. And Christians fight!
But Peter says we need to put a sign outside our church that reads: Come in here and hear a message about how to live life to its fullest, to find loving relationships and have a bunch of good days.
Yes, I’m preaching a prosperity gospel—but it has nothing to do with money!
Yes, I’m preaching a pursuit of happiness gospel—but it has nothing to do with parties.
Yes, I’m preaching a message that tells people how to love life and live it to its fullest!
But read the whole verse.
Love life = the opposite of pessimism vs. 10,11
Ecclesiastes 2:17 Solomon says, “I hated life…” Even with all his wealth and power, Solomon came to realize that he wasn’t happy and he hadn’t experienced life to the fullest. He had women, houses, parties and power. But he hadn’t enjoyed life. “Everything was futile and striving after the wind.” That’s not us…God calls us to enjoy life, to love and see good days…
HOW do we get this full life? How do we get these good days? The Peanuts cartoon showed Lucy philosophizing and Charlie Brown is listening. She says, “Life is a lot like a deck chair. Some people place it to see where they are going. Some people place it to see where they’ve been. And some place it so they can see where they are at the present.” Charlie Brown sighs, “I can’t even get mine unfolded.” Well, folks, this morning I’m going to unfold for you God’s formula for living a full life. It’s right here in
1. Guard your speech
Guard your speech from venom.
Guard your speech from bitterness.
Guard your speech from gossip.
Look back at James 3. Vs. 2-12 talk about how hard it is to tame the tongue…and then vs. 13 talks about showing people godly wisdom by our good behavior—specifically when it comes to controlling the bitterness and jealousy and selfish ambition that usually characterizes an out of control tongue!
ILL.- Someone said, “Usually the first screw that gets loose in a person’s head is the one that controls the tongue.”
ILL.- A young man was sent to Socrates to learn oratory or how to speak. On being introduced to the great philosopher, he talked so much that Socrates asked for double fees. “Why charge me double?” asked the young man.