Saturday, September 4, 2010

Worth the effort

Suddenly it has gone from a balmy 70’s in the morning to a chilly 50 degrees! So today I reached for my jeans, far beneath all the summer shorts and capris.

As I pulled them on I thought for a millisecond that maybe they’ll be looser than they were when I wore them last in the spring... did I mention that hope lasted for a millisecond?!
Sure enough, because I had not made an effort to lose weight – I mean seriously, summer was just made for ice cream!! – my jeans were a measurement of the result.

There is no magic just because I wish there were.
Jeans that fit more loosely will only happen when I put in the effort (or when I buy bigger jeans…!) sigh...

I find a similar scenario in my Christian life when I face a situation and react just as poorly as I have in the past ever even thought I’m a year older in my relationship with Christ. Just because time has passed doesn’t necessarily mean that I’m further along in becoming more like Christ. It, as any good thing, takes conscious effort.

What what would be the result of this effort? A slimmer silhouette? Hardly! Nothing that transient!

“Blessed are those who trust in the Lord and who have made the Lord their hope and confidence. They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green and they go right on producing delicious fruit.” Jeremiah 17:7,8

Roots that reach deep into the water – the living water of God’s Word
They are not bothered by _______ or worried by ______________. Whatever is put into those blanks – NOT bothered, NOT worried.
Their leaves stay green – still fresh, and growing, and producing fruit.
What a picture!

How do I become like this tree?
First I must be planted by the riverbank – do I know the Lord, do I long to be in His presence, dwelling in His sanctuary? Is He the place that I live? Where my unoccupied thoughts return to?
Secondly are my roots reaching deep for Him? Have I anchored my hope and confidence to Him? Have I wrapped my stability around and put my trust in all the precious promises He has given to me?

“And I pray that from His glorious, unlimited resources He will give you mighty inner strength through his Holy Spirit. And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in Him.

May your roots go down deep into the soil of God’s marvelous love. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love really is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it.
Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God. Now glory be to God! By His power at work within us He is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would every dare to ask or hope" Ephesians 3:16-20

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