Do What You Can, Then Trust God With What You Can’t

There was a young man who needed his apple orchard to flourish.  To bring in a harvest that would sustain his family’s needs through the long winter.  So, he planted new trees.  Then he prayed to the Lord, “Please send gentle warm rains” to nourish my trees and provide them the drink they need.  And God sent rain.  Next, the young orchard farmer prayed, “Lord, now we need sunshine to dry up the rain and provide warmth” for the tree’s roots to grow.  And God shone the sun bright in the sky.

Now, the little trees were showing much hope.  The young farmer was pleased and knew the next thing he needed to pray, “Lord, send strong winds” for the roots to bury in deep and grow strong.  And God sent a strong frontal wind.  Lastly, the young man prayed, “Finally Lord, please send a frost” in order to preserve and brace their tissues.  And God sent a frost.

After this, the trees began to not look so good.  The young orchard farmer went out and realized all his trees had died.  Sadly he sought the wisdom of an old wise neighbor who, too, grew his legacy, provided for, and raised his family on a successful apple orchard.  “Wise neighbor”, says the young farmer, “I don’t understand what happened? I did everything right.”

To which the wise neighbor replied, “Young son, you see, when I plant my orchard I leave it in God’s hands.  He knows what the trees need and what they don’t need.  God along holds perfect timing in His hands.”

You see, it’s important that we have faith in God and in his timing and will.  When we take things into our own hands we are no longer trusting in God and His plan.  Like a parent, when a child asks to eat cookies all day because they do not see the harm coming to them by doing so, a parent knows the future and therefore denies the child.  The child may not understand but the child needs to trust in the parent’s wisdom.  God is our Father.  He knows the beginning from the end.  Yes we may pray for something, but when you don’t get what “you” want, do not be disappointed.  He has something else in store.  Something better.  God promises us life and to have it abundantly (John 10:10).

Our view is so limited.  Our ways are not His ways, nor our our thoughts His thoughts (Isaiah 55:8).  Do your part and then leave the rest to Him who holds you in the palm of his trusting hand.

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Before You Jump: Read This!

Some of you may already posses this, some others may not. I felt this simple word picture illustration was vital and important to share, if you don’t yet have what it recommends please make sure you grab one for yourself as quickly a possible!!

Imagine yourself coming to the edge of a canyon.  You can’t turn back because this is your past, and we all know you can’t go back to redo your past.  In order to live you need to get to the other side:

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So what are your options?  You can either A.) Take it upon yourself to try and get to the other side.  In which case, ALL chances lead to death:

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You’re asking why?  For one thing, the canyon is too vast and too big to get to the other side on your own.  You know that if you do make it to the other side, you will have life and can continue on your journey, striving forward and moving ahead.  However, you can’t take anything with you.  You can never take anything from this life with you, so there will be no ropes, no bridges, no helicopters to lift you over.  All those “things” you acquire on earth, you will never be able to take with you.  On your own you can only jump… try as you might, run as fast as you can, and jump, but you will always fall short.

Except!  There is one thing that will get you to the other side.  It doesn’t cost a thing and you always had it there waiting for you:

IMG_0561With Christ you can cross over!  Put Christ in the center of your life, the center of your obstacles, and He will make the burden so light that all you need to do is cross over to LIFE and have it abundantly.  You see, there is no plunging to your death when you have Christ central.  There’s no going back, or looking back, you can continue forward.  He is all you need.  All of those other things you acquire in life (careers, houses, cars, boats, clothes, friends, money), you can never and will never take that with you.  But what you will take is your eternal LIFE as focused heavenward.  Jesus “bridges” the gap for us.  In Him we have victory!!

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Off the Ship Talking Like a Sailor

“Nor should there be obscenity, foolish talk or coarse joking, which are out of place, but rather thanksgiving.” (Eph. 5:4)

In writing this, I know it seems strange, quite random, and unfitting.  During my morning quiet time this really stood out to me and I couldn’t shake it.  There isn’t a current situation or example that lead me specifically to this other than perhaps it’s a reminder for anything to come in the near future.  Some of these basic principals are great refreshers.  We must come back to remind ourselves of what behaviors help us to shine and those that make us really ugly.  Without further ado..

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What is this teaching?

T – We are to follow God’s example and walk in love.  Jesus Christ is our perfect “model after”.  He is without sin and blameless which is what we should aspire to be.  Immorality and bad language is not something God would encourage nor an example of himself shining through us would be.

What can we praise God for?

A – Praise Him for sending His one and only Son into the world so that we have the example of the perfect lamb.  Who we aspire to be like, we were created in His image.  Those who are impure and immoral will not be entering the kingdom of heaven, however we continue to pray for their salvation.  God has selected and chosen His people, we give him praise that he personally selected us, he knows us personally.

How do I fail to realize this in my own life?

C – I’m guilty of talking like a sailor.  Being influenced by the negativity of the world.  In anger I will have outbursts of filthy talk, sometimes using it to hurt others as I am feeling hurt.  Words are extremely powerful and they can cut deep.  It’s best to choose our words wisely.

What can I ask God for?

S – Father God, help us to not waste a single word that comes from our mouths.  Our speech should be used to build others up according to their needs and to benefit those who listen.  (Eph. 4:29)  I need to remember you first when I am angered so that my focus can be on you and see the situation whole through your eyes and not my own eyes who are jaded by the cloudiness of this world.  We aspire to be in your image and thank you Lord that you chose us!  In your son’s name we pray, Amen.