As it turns out, my wife and I have successfully implanted a real zest for living life to the fullest into our children. Not too long ago we had one of those famous, intense, passionate Washington discussions about that very subject! During these heated debates it is not uncommon for the discussion to go on for two or three hours. Everyone has something to say and no-one is shy about voicing their opinions. This particular debate came about because one of my sons (who shall remain nameless) was vehemently arguing his point that people were basically motivated by their own self-interest and that life never really ventured any deeper than that! We disagreed adamantly, arguing that life was in its most basic form spiritual and that there is something behind our physical life that forms the basis for our true motivation and desire. Sometimes it seemed we really agreed with each other. Other times we disagreed, while presenting illustration after illustration to make our respective cases. Then my other, slightly older son said some words; true words that cut through all the arguments and dissension. As soon as he said them, I knew those words were God-inspired! He said, “Hey man, sometimes you gotta empty your cup out!” He followed by explaining that when you are young you think you have things figured out, until the day comes when you realize you don’t have things figured out. For that reason, you have to be willing to “empty out” your cup from time to time and take a fresh look at things. In other words, you have to stay humble about life in order to keep learning, or else you and your full cup ain’t gonna grow and progress!
Wow, now there is a lesson you want to hold on to! Many times in life we get stuck not by the things we don’t know, but instead by the things we think we know, that we don’t know! Think about some of the problems that you are currently facing in your life. Not the problem that came up yesterday, the problems that you have been carrying around for a while. Those things that you don’t like; wish you could change; those issues that seem to have no solution. Why do you suppose those problems are sticking around for so long? They hang around because their cause isn’t what you think (and think and think and think) it is! The A, B, and C that produced that D may not be… Empty your cup out! As long as you pridefully hold on to your theory (A+B+C = D, damn it!) is as long as your problem persists. A great man once said, “Choose your ruts wisely, you may be in them for a long time!” A rut in the dirt road is formed because the car’s wheels ride down the same path over and over and over again. Soon a rut is formed and that deep groove is real easy to fall into. If you try to drive out of the rut, you get sucked back in. The solution? Take a different road! Don’t take the same road and by the intensity of YOUR will fight the wheel with all of YOUR might try to get up and out! It ain’t gonna happen. You lost before you started because the cause wasn’t what you thought it was!
God tells us all throughout His Word to be humble or to have humility. Not humble as the world defines it, mind you. The world (code word-the adversary) defines humble as something similar to a doormat that anyone can freely wipe his feet on. “You gotta stay humble brotha!” “Don’t get too confident man!” “Now don’t you start braggin!” In other words, stay average and dull and lifeless and get back in line! That folks, ain’t it! True humility simply means that you don’t mind emptying your cup out from time to time because you are willing to believe that life and God are bigger and wiser than you are and at times you need some help. There’s no shame in that, is there? What if that problem you cannot seem to overcome was actually designed by someone (or something) and craftily put into place, then rehearsed over and over again with the result that now you cannot seem to overcome it? Well, all the adamacy and resolve in the world isn’t going to get you over the top, because the top isn’t where you think it is! You need a fresh look. You need to clear out of your mind what you think you know and be willing to learn again. That’s what I love about children. They are ripe little sponges for learning. Have you ever noticed how happy they are? They are interested in everything. everything is exciting, fascinating. Well, as adults we haven’t exhausted our learning, no, not even close. What we have done is shut down our minds, concluded our cups were full and closed ourselves off to the greater realities in life. Ladies and gentleman, you have got to empty your cups out! Here’s one of my all time favorite verses about humility:
Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding…Proverbs 3:5
Trust in who? Yourself? Your wisdom? Your insights? Haha and lean not unto YOUR OWN understanding. You see, your own understanding is where you got beat! Me too! The adversary knows that if he appeals to our ego and our pride, he can beat us pretty easily.
There’s a whole world of living life to the fullest that is out there for you! There is excitement, joy and incredible discovery waiting out there, just for you. Don’t spend anymore time and energy trying to solve everything and figure everything out on your own! Look outside of yourself and what you think you know! Look to God because He is the great spiritual reality behind all that there is in this life.
And remember “young-un” sometimes you gotta empty your cup out!