Find Some Margin

The other day a friend of mine commented to me about a mutual friend, “Oh, he is all about margin.” She was talking about something far different than a margin call on your investments. Dr. Richard Swenson is a Christian medical doctor, and he wrote a book called, “Margin.” He said that margin in our lives is much like the white space around the text of a book. If a book consists words and paragraphs all smashed together without the white space, it would be unreadable. In the same way, life can become very difficult if we lack margin.

Ron Walters is Vice-President of the Salem Media Group, a Christian broadcasting network. He recently wrote about driving his precious, vintage 1951 Ford pickup through a busy intersection, when the truck promptly stopped. He was holding up traffic in several directions and other motorists were swearing at him and saluting him with one finger. The problem? The truck was out of gas. He knew that the gauge no longer worked, but he was sure there was gas in the tank. The truck was going nowhere until it was refueled. Walters then wrote:

“I had a similar experience spiritually recently. Things have been extremely busy in recent months and my family is facing a situation that has just totally drained my tank. I was so busy and so burdened that I had terribly neglected my devotional life. I was literally running on empty and just before a preaching assignment, I sputtered to a halt and had a major meltdown spiritually and emotionally. My tank was empty. The good news is that God immediately drew me to himself, and as I poured out my heart to God, he poured out his Spirit into me. The “fuel” was readily available, but I had to fill the tank. Lesson learned? I certainly hope so. My counsel to you: don’t run on empty.

That’s pretty sound advice to us all the time. That’s absolutely necessary advice to us when we find ourselves going a thousand miles an hour, sometimes seeing no “light at the end of the tunnel. We need to fill our tank – and the tank filler is the Lord Jesus, the Word of God, and being with his people. Quit running on empty and build some margin into your life.

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