Emptied.. by Ashley Chakeris 

One of the best feelings in the world to me is feeling completely spent from a fantastic session in the water. You leave the ocean with noodle arms, tired legs, and a ravenous stomach ready to eat everything that’s not nailed down. You leave with nothing left. You are done. 

At the end of Jesus’ life on Earth he prayed to his Father, “I have brought you glory on Earth by completing the work you have given me to do.”  Jesus was leaving his life with nothing left. He gave his all. He was done. As we continue to marvel at the miracle of Christmas and a God that came to us so we can know him, we also move into a new year full of promise and hope. How did the baby born get to end of his life with the ability to say he had completed all his Father had given him to do? How do we move into a new year trying to accomplish all God has in store for us? More importantly, how do we live our lives so that at the end of our Earthly lives, we too can say “Done”? 

We need to be reminded that we too live out a call to be emptied. The call of a Christ follower is to pour ourselves out relationally to others. Real love will always be costly. It will cost us our own expectations, ambitions, time, money and more. To start we must be filled by Him, but that filling comes with the invitation of pouring back out to others, so that the cycle may repeat. The miraculous paradox is that when we are emptied we feel the fullest. Think again about when you leave the beach and you feel the best after you have given it your all out there. Jesus came and left everything that was filling behind so that He could pour into and fill us. His love and sacrifice manifested in thirty-three years of giving himself away ultimately culminated with Him dying on a cross for us. With a new year upon us, let’s seek to be people that empty ourselves out for others in the name of Jesus because that is exactly what he did for us. 

“Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.” Philippians 2:1-4