Do you feel like you’re running on empty? Stock up on the fruit of the spirit.
“The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.” (Psalm 23)
Do you remember the nursery rhyme about Old Mother Hubbard? “Old Mother Hubbard went to the cupboard to give the poor dog a bone./ But when she came there the cupboard was bare and so the poor dog had none.” Old Mother Hubbard obviously failed to restock supplies for Mutzie. How about you and me? Is our spiritual cupboard as bare as Bowzer’s Bone Bin?
Maybe we don’t lack the basics of food, water and warmth but do we have enough spiritual provision to get through life with grace and peace? Did our supply of love get used up long ago? Are we limping along, angry, wounded, depressed, frustrated, fearful, needy, and broken?
Daily crises and challenges relentlessly empty the shelves of our lives, rendering us helpless and woefully inadequate until we locate the cupboard marked “love, grace and peace”. That cupboard is Jesus Christ. He is Supply and Supplier; He is Provision and Provider. His treasure stores, marked with our individual names, always exceed our wildest expectations and our greatest needs.
In Psalm 23 the Lord promises to feed, guide, shield, lead, refresh, restore, free, protect, comfort, and love us all the days of our lives. In Him all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hidden for us, according to Colossians 2:3. Why, then, are we curled up in the corner, like Old Mother Hubbard’s dog, sad and forlorn? Why do we feel forsaken when we can run to Christ and help ourselves to grace and love that meets our need and lifts us into joyful living again? Dogs trust their masters for provision. Why can’t we trust Christ? He never disappoints. His overflowing resources are promised to us.
Do we fail to trust because Christ’s provision rarely looks like what we asked for in prayer? Is it that He shines his spotlight on our selfish emotional wants and ministers to our true spiritual need instead? Is it that if we receive His provision we must quit groaning and grow up into maturity? Probably.
We ask Christ to lift our burden; instead He gives grace. We ask for release from the problem. He promises to carry it for us if we’ll stay yoked to Him. We complain that no one loves us and He says we’re wrong, He does, and that He’s enough. If you’re looking to be babied, don’t come to this Provider. Christ won’t let us live in protracted infancy. He says, “Let Me heal your wounds. There. Done. Now come back to the battle, that’s the only place I can give you victory.”
And so, the question becomes: Am I willing to pay the price to restock my spiritual cupboard with Christ Himself? Jesus never disappoints as Old Mother Hubbard did. But I must:
Our Prayer: Jesus, loving provider, Help me run to You when I am broken and used up. Cause me to come to Your waiting arms when I feel abandoned and lonely. I choose Your unlimited provision of love and grace and peace that Your sacrificial death provides for me. Thank You. Amen.
Question: Are you willing to pay the price to restock your spiritual cupboard with Christ?