Sometimes I feel empty. I go and go, and give and give, until I am drained.

The holidays do that to most of us. Finally, we sit down, lay down, or even collapse.

But there is something holy about emptiness. The empty Cross, the empty Tomb, totally emptying oneself for others. “{Jesus} emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, being born in human likeness.” (Philippians 2:7, NRSV).

I realize that sometimes I am full of myself. I can get so involved in the me stuff that I don’t leave room for the you stuff, or worse, the God stuff. It happens to everyone, and most of the time we don’t even realize it.

When something goes wrong and people ask, “why did God do that to me?”, they fail to understand that most of what happens to us is a result of what we have done to ourselves. Our actions, good or bad, set events in motion, and most of the time we get what we played for.

But we rarely want to accept the blame for our own mistakes. We would much rather put the blame on someone or something else. We can fall into the trap of doing the same things over-and-over again while expecting a different outcome. It is most regrettable that God often gets the blame.

This is a result of failing to empty oneself and make room for God. To empty oneself means to step-aside and give God control over your life.

Our human nature, hindered by sin, does not want to give-up control, and since we are ill-equipped to govern or control ourselves in healthy ways, we stumble and fall.

The fact that we have an enemy, Satan the Devil, who is always working against the will of God, makes it even more important for us to empty ourselves and make room for God.

God, our Creator and Redeemer, wants us to be happy, healthy, and whole. God wants us to reach our full potential. God wants us to have peace in this life, and an eternity in the Kingdom of God.

When we empty ourselves, we make room for God; Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

St. Paul wrote to Christians at Ephesus, “I pray that you may have the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.” (Ephesians 3:18-19, NRSV).

I pray that you will be filled with the fullness of God, and leave no room for darkness, negativity, fear, or doubt.

I pray that you will reach your full potential, and give the glory to God. I pray that you may experience the joy that passes human understanding.

Let the love of God in Christ heal you, and heal our world. Be blessed in 2018 and forever.

Blessings and Peace to You All,

Fr. David+

Rev. Dr. David Bridges is the pastor at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Grove. He can be reached at St. Andrew's worship service is at 10 a.m., every Sunday, and broadcast on KWXC 88.9 FM at noon on Thursdays and at 5 p.m. on Saturdays.