We are compelled to annihilate each other to the point of no return.
The competitive nature reels through our veins as if our lives depended on it.
Having been a marked adversary in college for the game of Spades, Rummy is now a daily battle of wits, intellectual fervor, and at times the hurling of cards across the kitchen table.
The opposite player redeems himself at a certain point of losing, to risk it all. The all out desire to win suddenly becomes a match of wills, seemingly clever tactics of sly or cowardly choices or the acceptance that “there is nothing left to lose here.”
Noticing this obvious change in one’s attitude, the winning opponent is set on the defensive. The losing adversary quickly collects more cards than the manufacturer made filling his hands full of Kings, Queens, Jacks and hopefully all the Aces. The race is on as the two or three players try to remember what cards the losing player acquired.
There have been times when this process has been an ill fated loss for the one holding the most cards ending with a shower of hearts, diamonds, clubs and spades all over the floor.
Reminding ourselves when it is all over it is just a game is it is just a game. However, it is never over for the loser. The dream arises of the next official competition and the display of unknown skills to show up bringing shock to their opponent’s system.
Risking it all sets in motion a willingness to do whatever it takes (removing from that the alternative of cheating) to win.
One will do almost anything to find water when the well is dried up.
Another will do almost anything to find food when your cupboard is bare.
Unfortunately, we go about finding food and water in all the wrong places. The disappointment or let down is a circle of events bringing us back to the empty well and cupboard.
Grabbing for any crumbs or the few rain drops over our heads we fail to see the bucket of fresh water sitting beside the dried up well or the basket of fish and bread next to the counter. It was there all along but we would have had to risk it all to receive it.
Many would starve or die of thirst before admitting the truth. The pride of risking it all for the one who risked it all for us simply isn’t politically correct or acceptable in a society of self-sufficient idiots.
Whoever gave us the idea we are perfect and don’t need a Savior should be pushing a barren cart around the grocery store or viewing the mirage of water in the desert as a means of prideful restoration. Who cares if you have no money…you’re starving. Can I please have that cup of water?
All of a sudden risking it all for a morsel of food or a few sips of water overrides the opinions of others, the embarrassment of lack or the dispute of your priorities.
Jesus answered her, “If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water.”
Why are we so resembling of the Israelites? Because we are the Israelites; Complaining, whining, mumbling nomads who would rather have a fashionable, favorable, and noted reputation than eat.
Why would we extend ourselves an eternity with the Creator of the Universe for a few years/decades of mutual admiration from the distrusting society of political correctness?
The enemy has shown us the delicacies of the world. He has blown out of proportion the treasures of a moment of fame or fortune. He has thrown us an empty cupboard or dry well of lies that we fell for, hook, line and sinker.
Having been there and done that more times than I would like to confess, at least now the hook has been removed from my throat. And I say that willingly.
It was my choice to stop following the crowd and follow Jesus even as I stumble and fall repeatedly. He is the Savior of “effort” and gives his grace infinitely.
He helps me up, brushes the dirt off my weary soul and comforts me with his presence.
The keynote is letting go; realizing hitting bottom is often where Jesus is found. Not because he wasn’t in plain sight, but we refuse to recognize him until our cup has no refill and the waitress has gone home.
No one else can do for us what Jesus did and does.
There are no substitutes, filled glasses or cupboards that will end our famine or thirst.
He did it all; and in one weekend that changed the course of history.
Playing Rummy, it is so easy to risk it all when losing because you have nothing left to lose.
So it should be in life, but we don’t have to hit rock bottom.
Just look up. The cross is no longer underground.
Jesus carried it up a hill and left it there. He doesn’t need it anymore.
But we do if for no other reason but to remind us that he did risk it all for us.
John 7: 15 The woman said to him, “Sir, give me this water so that I won’t get thirsty and have to keep coming here to draw water.”
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