A new season is upon us and plants are starting to turnover on the farm. Our branches have been flowering and fruit has been harvested for over five months. The beginning of this growth cycle started with a couple new crops for Living Hope. For the first time we decided to plant in separate tunnels, tomatoes, sweet peppers and cherry tomatoes. Growing three different species at the same time has complicated the dynamic of the system a bit, but to date all cohesion and “fruitation” is in tact. It is still a beautiful sight walking into each of the tunnels and observing the different plants and fruit, each with their own characteristics. However, with it being the fifth month of the growth cycle, plants are starting to die out and we are starting to cut out lines of plants and irrigation. The reason for this is that even though some of our plants are still producing good fruit, others are not. This process enables the plants to conserve nutrients and enhances their ability to distribute them as effient as possible. We do this by topping the plants that are still producing good fruit and cutting out the plants that aren’t.
Through this process it reminds me that as we search for things in our lives or try to get places we want to go, it is often important to consider cutting off things that are holding us back from getting there. Today it is my prayer that we all create a spiritual environment that enables us to dig deep enough to reach the heights of where we want to go.
So how do we get there, well some might say it all depends on where we want to go. The Old Testament has lots of rules you can follow that can lead to a productive faithful life, but following rules doesn’t always change our hearts, it just changes what our expectations are in reward for what we have done or what we haven’t. The New Testament teaches a declaration of our Savior Jesus Christ and the acceptance of salvation through His death on the cross. Through this belief we have the ability to lead a transformed life of God within us, that leads to genuine repentance and discipline, because discipline in and of itself doesn’t always lead to a transformed life. Being transformed moves the emphasis from us and puts it on Him.
1 Cor 13:13 And now these three remain: faith hope and love. But the greatest of these is love. The Bible also tells us that God is love (1 John 4:8), that it is not just something that he does, but it is what He is. You can probably think of a really long-winded answer a pastor, friend or maybe yourself has given to the question of who God is, but it can simply be summed up in one word, love. It is what He is. Every expression of its form is Him. If anyone asks why they are supposed to be looking for God or that they didn’t know they were supposed to be, they have already experienced Him in some aspect or moment of their life. The robbery of thinking is that love is an expression of ourselves and not God through us. If God is love, then all expressions of love are not only an expression of His nature, but and expression of God. I was listening to a song the other day and heard a line that said, “Love what you have and you will have more love (God).” I added the God at the end, but it fits. If we want God to intercede in our lives, we need to act out in His ways more often and then we will have more of Him.
So how do we get where we want to go. To enter into an enduring productive system in our lives we must find things that work together. We can all understand that one thing by itself can be more powerful when we add more things to it that agree with its force. The problem in most of our lives is that we have an inability to remove the things that aren’t in alignment with where we want to go or with how we want to get there. We hold on to these things and try to drag them along behind us and then wonder why we aren’t getting down the track as fast as we would like.
The repetition of processes like attending church and for believers showing and bowing in agreement to God are all methods of bringing our lives into agreement for things we are praying for. These agreeing, supporting acts build things up that we are prayng for and makes them foundational in our lives. Matthew 18:20 For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst.
This is the easy part. We all can find a few people to agree with us on something and pray for it. The prayer and gathering together is not necessarily the problem. The problem is us. The problem could be that what we are praying for is not in alignment with God or we just aren’t ready for it and God is still preparing us and building us into who we need to be, to be ready to receive what we are praying for. The key is to love the process and be excited about the process that God is working with and in us all the time.
I was listening to a friend’s testimony the other week where he mentioned that God had closed a door on him in a relationship that he was looking forward to turning into something more. He had prayed about the relationship and was sure there was soon to be a moment in his life where prayers for many years would be answered. In telling this story he was positive and he said that he knew God would answer the prayer by opening another door and form a new relationship. However I could tell he was still saddened by the loss.
This story reminded me of something somebody once told me when I had a similar disappointment in my life. I was told that when we set goals and have plans on how to get where we want to go we have certain things cemented in expectation and forget about the process that is building us up to be ready for where we are heading. The fact is that throughout the expectation of a door being walked through or a goal being accomplished we spend most of our lives walking and wandering around between the doors we are trying to get too. Therefore, if we can’t find enjoyment in the process or feel Gods presence through the construction taking place in our lives, that is building us up into who God wants us to be, we will be miserable and unfulfilled most of our lives.
Jeremiah 12:5 “If you have run with footmen and they have tired you out, then how can you compete with horses? If you fall down in a land of peace, how will you do in the thicket of the Jordan?” If we have not risen to a place in our lives where we can keep up with the circumstances surrounding us, how can we expect to keep up with greater things? God never throws away the clay once it is molded, but sometimes He breaks it down and molds it into something greater.
If we continually put things in our lives that don’t agree with who we want to be or with where we want to go you will be broken down. It is my prayer that if things don’t agree with the purpose and plan in our lives that we are able to leave them behind. I pray that we don’t allow things in our lives that compete for your futures and that we don’t allow things in our lives that take our nutrients. We should be protective of our environments and create an environment of agreement in our lives.
Things we let in our lives must agree, they must work well together. The biggest problem in our lives is that we are allowing things in that don’t agree with were we want to go. They shouldn’t be a part of our plan and we are dragging them along. These things are a part of our plan that needs to be removed. If any aspect of our lives isn’t working out of love, then God isn’t a part of our plan. Things that disconnect us from God and are bringing us down, we need to let them go and cut them off.
My challenge to us is to pray a prayer of agreement. Personally stand before God genuinely in an act of agreement and ask Him for the strength and joy to complete the process of where He wants us to go. Then, may our lives be in a fruitful environment. For it is not God that needs to change, but it is us. God has been fully revealed in His word and is through the Holy Spirit in our lives. If we are able to create the proper depth of a spiritual environment that is in agreement with where we want to go, then even the worst things in our lives will work out for good, if we love Him and follow Him according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).