CAN’T HAVE ONE WITHOUT THE OTHER!…John 3: 16-21

Now it’s stuck in my mind!   Was thinking about that old Campbell’s soup jingle.  I can’t stop singing it –‘soup and sandwich, soup and sandwich, go together…’.  I keep adding ‘like a horse and carriage’ but that doesn’t sound right or very appetizing!  What were the lyrics?  Repeating ‘soup and sandwich’, ‘like Mr and Mrs’…’can’t have one without the other’.   Some things naturally go together.  Man and woman…boy and his dog…believing in Jesus and living like we mean it.  Had to sneak that last one in!

John 3: 16 is such a famous Bible verse that I suppose its meaning gets lost in its familiarity.  Jesus talks about believing in Him.  Taking Him at His Word.  Aligning ourselves with Him. ‘Can’t have one without the other’.

Affirming that Jesus is the Savior of the world, and MY Savior also.  Accepting Him into our hearts, acting on what we say we believe.  It’s no act.  No disconnect.  None of this ‘do as I say’ stuff.  No ‘goody-goody’ on Sundays while real bad the rest of the week.  That’s like having a sandwich without that soup!  ‘Soup and sandwich…’

I know there have been times in my life when I’ve tried living by a double standard.  Hoping not to get caught.  That the mask would not slip down to reveal my face as it truly was.  Two-faced.  A lovely vase with cracks sealed with wax to cover up its flaws.  Still me probably on a daily basis?  What do you mean ‘probably’!

Because I’m far from perfect doesn’t mean that I don’t want to be like Jesus in my everyday life.  As a matter of fact, my failings give me more desire to live for Him.  The Holy Spirit pulls me back from the edge to the safe harbor of Jesus.  If I could care less about Him, you’d know that I haven’t really and truly given Jesus my life.  I haven’t truly surrendered to Him, when my life is more in MY selfish hands than His. When my conscience doesn’t register even a slight twinge when I sin.  Doesn’t bother me when Jesus is the last thought I have in my day, if even then. Can’t have one without the other.

Either we truly believe in Jesus or we’re full of hot air without any wind of the Holy Spirit.  We know the difference.  Imagine someone who says they know Jesus but with no evidence of Him in their lives.  Could they be that blind?  That deceived?  Probably.  Can’t have one without the other.  Best to name Him as Savior and Lord, AND aim to follow Him throughout our days and nights.  No ‘probably’ about it!

Prayer:  Lord, we want our words to be true with our lives.  To know you and to follow you.  In Jesus’ name.  Amen.

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