“More and more” is a phrase often used in a negative context because it can imply discontentment. And when we are referring to selfish needs, it is negative and unhealthy. But there is the positive tension with the phrase. It relates to the unselfish side of what we are striving to be with the Holy Spirit’s power.
Last year, you may have acted out your faith in a huge way. You may have given more of yourself than in the past. You may have donated more. You may have done something that stretched you farther than you have allowed in the past.
Yet, heading into the new year, you feel like it isn’t enough. There is more you should do. I’ve been asking myself why is that? Lots of thoughts have been floating through my head…
- We aren’t made to live in the accolades of the past.
- The idea of the fruits of the Spirit imply a continual yielding.
- As we grow, we realize more and more (there is that phrase again) that God’s love should show through our actions towards others.
I think this is why we desire to set goals that relate to how we live and treat others.
There is little that is significant in life that would qualify as Once and Done. Do it once and you don’t have to do it anymore. Exercise is not a once and done. Eating healthy is not a once and done (oh how easy that would make life). Showering is not a once and done (if only). Earning a living is not a once and done.
I really struggled to think of a really important thing that was a once and done. Okay, maybe donating a kidney. I had a selfless family member donate one for a friend. You can only do that once and live.
But seriously, life really acts out more accurately on the principle of more and more, the internal more and more. Not the external get more. The external, selfish more and more is present when we don’t have the right focus, when we live for self.
As I look at what more and more means in my life this year, here are some verses I’m reading and thinking on.
And may the Lord make your love for one another and for all people grow and overflow, just as our love for you overflows. – 1 Thess. 3:12
I pray that your love will overflow more and more, and that you will keep on growing in knowledge and understanding. – Phil 1:9
No, dear brothers and sisters, I have not achieved it, but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead. I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. – Phil 3:13-14
My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. – Gal 2:20
What more and more are you striving for this year?