I really do enjoy life. I enjoyed the coffee in the morning, the early lunches, the evening entertainment, playing games with my grandsons, and just about every other thing in my life. I like to fish, drive my corvette, sit with friends over coffee, casually working on my stamp collection, and yes, even playing Fallout4 on my Xbox1. I’m learning to relax in retirement and enjoy the freedom each morning of being able to do whatever I want (for the most part!). Yes, we really do enjoy our lives. That’s what God intended. In one of his letters to Timothy, Paul exhorted this young man to relax and enjoy life. He tells him to trust God “Who richly and ceaselessly provides us with everything for our enjoyment” (Amplified Bible 1 Timothy 6:17). I know there are some perverted exceptions but the standard norm is that we all  love our lives and cling to them. We’d rather give up our money or any other possessions to thieves in order to save our lives. I read of a farmer recently who cut off a leg in order to save his life. We will submit our bodies to treacherous medical procedures to extend our lives for even one month. The truth is, we love our lives and will do almost anything to sustain them. It’s interesting as James Montgomery Boice observed, “Satan used this truth to slander righteous Job: ‘Skin for skin! A man will give all he has for his own life’ (Job 2:4). For nearly everyone, life is the most precious of all possessions.”[1]

Yet the Psalmist David exclaims in Psalm 63:3, God’s “steadfast love is better than life.” The sad thing about all the wonderful blessings in life that we enjoy so much is that none of them can truly touch our being, our souls. They provide temporary relief from the pain in the world. They offer momentary physical pleasures. They bring partial satisfaction to our search for meaning. They serve to pass the time for us. But they never touch us where we need it most. Jesus told the woman at the well in Samaria that earthly water will only satisfy for a short time. But He then says, “if you knew who it is that is speaking with you, you’d ask him for the Living water from which you will only need to drink once and be fully satisfied.” (John 4).

The steadfast love of God is the living water. It quenches our soul’s thirst for all time. Paul prayed for the Ephesians that they would “sink their roots down deep into God’s love” (Ephesians 3:17). He went on to explain that this is how we produce good fruit in our lives. Actually, Christ produces the fruit through us. That’s how Paul could say, “It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).

[1] James Montgomery Boice, Psalms 42–106: An Expositional Commentary (Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books, 2005), 519.