DAY 15: “Don’t Just Survive, Thrive!”

“It’s out of the overflow that we thrive!”

What comes to mind when you hear the word survive? How about the tv show “Survivor” where the contestants literally try to survive each week just to get a prize at the end albeit a good one. How many of them end up worse for the wear when it is all said and done? (Of course, They don’t show you that part of the show).  Maybe you think of finals week at college. I remember thinking “if I just survive these 2 weeks I can go home for the holidays, eat mom’s amazing food and be with my family.”  Being a music major I had to stay to the very last day of finals because of the nature of the music classes, (or was it the professors who did it on purpose because their professors did the same thing?) Surviving meant pulling “all-nighters”, ordering pizza at all hours of the day and night, living off coffee and feeling stressed out. No wonder they even call the week before finals “dead week”, you already feel like it!

The word survive means “to continue to live or exist”.  Well, that’s good, I want to continue to live and exist.  But at what cost? Most of the time we do whatever we have to do to live through it. Get to the end! Push through! We can do it! Just a little more! Pure survival mode.

During the holidays we can sure feel like we are just “surviving”.  Running here, running there, shopping for food, cooking the food, shopping for gifts, wrapping the gifts, putting up the decorations, extra things at the kids or grandkids school, year-end pressure and deadlines at work, time changes, season changes, family pressures. The list goes on and on… In survival mode yet?

I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to just survive, (been there, done that, bought the t-shirt), I want to thrive!  I want to be able to go throughout the Holidays and really experience them, not just go through the motions. That’s what God wants for us as well!

John 10:10 is the dividing line of the bible.  In the AMP version Jesus tells us that “the thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows). If something is stealing, killing, or trying to destroy your life that’s how you know it is not God!

The definition of thrive is to prosper, flourish, grow and develop strongly. It can also mean to be fulfilled, successful. My grandchild Theo is thriving due to proper nutrition, care and lots of love! Plants thrive when they receive the right amount of sunlight and water. People at work thrive when their talents are appreciated, and they are given the freedom to try new things. We thrive when we have the Word of God in us to the full and overflowing!

Jesus came so that we would have the “zoe” (the God kind) of life, a life that is full and overflowing.  A life that prospers, flourishes, grows, and develops well. That sounds like thriving to me! Jesus also said that He came so that we may enjoy life. How many of us forget that part?  He not only wants us to have a full life, but He wants us to enjoy it! If we don’t enjoy life while we are along for the ride then what’s the point of the ride?

In Acts 17:28 Jesus tells us “For in Him we live, and move and have our being.”   It’s out of the overflow that we thrive! It’s there that we prosper, flourish and find a life that is full.  As we spend time with Jesus, we become more like Him. We live and move and have our being In Him.  Our cup fills up and suddenly we are in overflow!

A few years ago, we wrote a song called “Overflow”.  It has ministered to many people on this very subject.  I’d like to share the chorus with you today. If you go to my podcast, you can hear it as well or you can find the entire song on i-tunes.

If you are reading, click on the link below and enjoy!

Here’s the chorus:

Out of the overflow, do I live, and move, and breathe and have my being.

Out of the overflow, do I see the signs and wonders that I see.

I choose to walk with Jesus, by the Word of God

Standing on the promise, Believing in my heart

Anything good I know, anything good I know, anything good I know comes out of the overflow.  

Overflow” (Written by Sean & Julie Swanson,  Copyright Swansong Music)

A “zoe”(God kind) of abundant life is waiting for you! Everything good comes out of the overflow. As you spend time with Jesus, you won’t just survive the holidays, you’ll thrive! May your cup run over making the holidays the most wonderful time of the year for you and for those around you!


Mama Swan