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What is the Amplified Life?

In the 1984 rock documentary comedy spoof “This is Spinal Tap”, there’s a classic scene where the lead guitarist is explaining to the film director that their amps have that extra push because the volume knob goes up to 11 instead of the traditional top value of 10 (You can watch the 50 second clip below). He explains, “when we need that extra little push over the cliff, we crank it up to 11, which is one louder than 10.” When the director suggests that they could just make the loudest value 10 instead of 11 and it would be just as loud, the guitarist thinks for a moment and responds, “these amps go to 11.”

When I think about living in Orange County, I sometimes think of that scene. It seems like many of us are trying to get that extra boost that would bring meaning and purpose and fulfillment to our lives.

The nature of people is that we all want full and meaningful lives and we generally pursue those things that we think will provide the meaning and happiness we desire. For many, that means long hours at work seeking to climb the corporate ladder. For others, it means getting the right car or living in the right neighborhood. For still others it means filling up on the many experiences that life in “the OC” offers. Let’s face it – whether it’s surfing, sailing, hiking, biking, shopping, entertainment or sports, there is no shortage of activities in Orange County for the adventure seeker.

Orange County has some of the best surf spots in the world!

The question is whether or not these pursuits have the ability to provide the meaning and purpose that our souls really long for? Does cranking our experiences up to 11, taking advantage of all that life in “the OC” offers, bring more meaning, purpose and joy into our lives?

Not really.

In John 10:10, Jesus said that “The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”

Jesus offers the kind of life we really want and were created to experience and He declares that He’s the only authentic source of real life.

Jesus offers a life of meaning and purpose by knowing Him intimately and experiencing the spiritual life for which He created us. We refer to this as the “Amplified” life, a life of spiritual adventure where Christ is amplified in us so that His love might be amplified through us to those around us.

Orange County is an awesome place to experience the amazing beauty and diversity of God’s creation. But all of the adventurous opportunities that exist here in “The OC” pale in comparison to experiencing God Himself.

Sunset Over Orange County, California
Sunset Over Orange County, California

Our hope is that Young Professionals in Orange County would experience an amplified life, where Jesus Himself is the source of adventure and passion in their life, even as they’re surfing, hiking, working or simply relaxing.

Jesus wants us to live life at “full volume.” And He invites us to “crank it up to 11.” But unlike popular culture, which encourages us to pursue things that can never give life to our souls, Jesus invites us to know Him and experience Him in the context of a real relationship. According to Jesus, this is life at “full volume.” This is the AMPLIFIED life.

David Lowe