Half Empty or Half Full? – 1 Peter 4:7-11

Half Empty or Half Full?  How do you look at things?  What type of a view do you normally take on?  How does it affect those around you, your job performance, your relationships, and your witness to the love of Jesus Christ?

This is essentially a question of the mind and what you think about the situations in that arise in your life.   A person who always complains, always is afraid and doubtful, who sucks the energy out of other people, who always seems to focus on the negative aspects of people, work, school, and life – what type of mindset would that be?  A half empty or a half full mindset?

What does God’s word say about this matter and how our mindsets should be?  Half empty/Half full?

It’s a mug of hot green tea at sushi bar, honest.

1 Peter 4:7-11 says, “The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray. Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers over a multitude of sins. Offer hospitality to one another without grumbling. Each one should use whatever gift he has received to serve others, faithfullyadministering God’s grace in its various forms. If anyone speaks, he should do it as one speaking the very words of God. If anyone serves, he should do it with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 

Clear-minded.  Yoda, the great Jedi Knight would always tell Luke to clear his mind and it was so he could have self control.  In this state of mind, Luke could focus on the force.  This is very much like what Paul is telling us to be.  Be clear minded, so that our judgments are not clouded with our doubts, insecurities, and distractions.  We are to be self controlled, so that we can focus on prayer.  Instead of clearing our minds to focus on the force like Luke, we focus on God.  When we prayer to God we are admitting that we need God’s help, that our mission is bigger than what we can handle.  When facing a mission that is large, difficult, with many multifaceted challenges it could be very easy to start viewing our lives as half empty, to take our eyes of Jesus.  But we must remember that Jesus is the vine, and we are the branches.  If we remain in him, we can do many things, but apart from him we can do nothing.

It is Jesus who makes us righteous.  It his holiness that is our holiness, his strength, which is our strength.

1 Peter 4:7-11 also gives me encouragement, that the tasks I face in life are to be met using the gifts that God has given me and the through strength that he provides.  I should lean not upon my own abilities, but upon his, and to work to the best I can with the abilities he has given me.  When I start to look at life as a half full glass, this verse reminds me to be clear-minded, to be self-controlled, not to grumble, but instead let Jesus fill my cup as he desires.

Paul said in 2 Corinthians 12:8-10, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.”  Delighting in my weakness, that would be a half full mentality.  I see that my weakness draws me to the cross, to his grace, to his strength.  Then I am strong.  When life’s blows hit, I could turn the other way, away from Christ, away from prayer, and then I am nothing, I am dry, I am empty.  But in reality, it’s when the waves come crashing that I run to Christ all the more, then that is when I am strong, when I am relying up God to carry me through.  In my life, I have found that when there is smooth sailing, I tend to become comfortable and lose sight of the fact that apart from Christ I can do nothing.  I pray that myself and all Christians may become more Cross-Focused and Christ-Centered when we face trails, that we won’t grumble.  That we won’t whine, but that we would shine.

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