Maximum Daily Allowance–By Dean Marini
In Psalm 55:16-17 the writer states, “But I will call on God and the Lord will rescue me. Morning, noon, and night I cry out in my distress, and the Lord hears my voice.” The psalmist is describing a relationship with the Heavenly Father that involves God fully and completely in every area of his life at every moment.
I work with quite a few fitness professionals. They are obsessed with nutrition and what they feed their bodies. Often times their strict competition diets don’t allow them to eat food that contains some of the nutrients their body needs, so they use vitamins and supplements. Taking them insures that they’re getting at least the minimum daily requirement of those important vitamins and minerals.
Many of us are guilty of applying that same principle to our spiritual lives. We try and get by with the minimum amount of time spent with God. Our lives are filled to the brim with work, family, hobbies, recreation, entertainment and other pursuits allowing little time for our spirit. One of the most powerful tools the enemy uses is to distract us from spending time in prayer and Scripture. Going to church for an hour a week/month/year, reading some spiritual quotes on social media and saying grace every third meal has left many of us spiritually malnourished.
John 15:4 quotes the words of Jesus: remain in Me and I will remain in you. The relationship the Lord is speaking of is one in which we draw all that we need for life through a deep and abiding connection. That connection only remains strong if we put in the needed time and effort. Ask yourself if you’d want to be in a romantic relationship where you only spent as much time with that person as you do right now with God?
Earlier in this piece I wrote about vitamins and supplements. Many of them, along with medications we take not only show us the minimum daily requirement but also list a maximum daily allowance. That’s what we should be striving for in order to make our walk with the Lord the BEST it can be. For too many Christians, the blood of Christ that should be flowing in our lives has become anemic.
John 15:5 warns us that “apart from Jesus we can do nothing”. The old adage that “absence makes the heart grow fonder” can be argued, but absence from God definitely makes us spiritually weaker. I spent last weekend trimming shrubs in my yard. It was amazing how fast the pieces that I trimmed off withered when they were removed. If we aren’t spending adequate time with our Heavenly Father, we too will quickly wither.
I used to tell my Marines, “Never be marginal when you have the ability to be exceptional.” Most of us want the abundant life that Jesus promises us in Scripture. But in order to receive that abundance, we must be seeking Him fervently! If we truly wish to get all we can out of our relationship with God, if we TRULY want our prayers to be powerful and effective (James 5:16) it requires us to seek Him first (Matt. 6:33).
By putting God first and developing a ravenous appetite for Scripture and spending time in prayer, we will experience remarkable growth. That growth will allow us to become stronger and more developed. That development sustains us in times of struggle. Our walk with the Lord becomes more intimate and satisfying, creating a desire for even more. We’ll no longer be satisfied with the minimum; we will want all that we can get.
Written By Dean Marini