Sunday, April 25, 2021

Are You Living on Empty?

Are You Living on Empty?

“I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for apart from Me you can do nothing.” John 15:5 

There are those who feel that they must be constantly laboring for the Lord in order to meet God's high standards. Jesus gave a clear picture of what our relationship to Him ought to be like. He is the vine, the source of our life. We are the branches, the place where fruit is produced. As we receive life from Christ, the natural, inevitable result is that fruit is produced in our lives. In our zeal to produce “results” for our Lord, we sometimes become so intent on fruit production that we neglect abiding in Christ. We may feel that “abiding” is not as productive or that it takes too much time away from our fruit production. Yet Jesus said that it is not our activity that produces fruit, it is our relationship with Him. Jesus gave an important warning to His disciples. He cautioned that if they ever attempted to live their Christian life apart from an intimate relationship with Him, they would discover that they ceased to produce any significant results. They might exert great effort for the kingdom of God, yet when they stopped to account for their lives, they would find only barrenness. One of the most dramatic acts Jesus ever performed was cursing a fig tree that had failed to produce fruit (Mark 11:14). Are you comfortable in abiding, or are you impatient to be engaged in activity? If you will remain steadfastly in fellowship with Jesus, a great harvest will be the natural by-product. - Blackaby Experiencing God Day by Day 

A long time ago there was a song that had a phrase in it that said "...running on empty...".

There's been many days, weeks even, that I felt that way.  How about you?

We are in a world that is back to producing the most interesting, wondrous, amazing no avail.  Huh?  You are probably asking.  But you just called them all those nice things then infer that they are worthless? Yes, I did. Rather, God is. Remember He tells me things to write. 

Look at what is in this world today. People warring over countless things.  Words, acceptance, peace, possessions, power, you name it and people are quarrelling over it. 

There is an aim and purpose in this world for all of that.  To separate those who are for Christ and His Salvation, from those who are against Him, and say they are good enough and don't need His Salvation. 

Biblically that's the world since Adam and Eve. 

We are living in what we THINK are incredible times when it comes to the abilities of what man has achieved.  50 years ago nobody was able to do what I am doing right now. Writing a blog, on a phone, that would be read around the world, in seconds.  All of those aspects were impossible 50, 40, even 30 years ago. 

We have lived and are living in a world of instant communication. Yet the communication we should be the most interested in isn't really being done. Between us and God. 

Oh here I go again about that.  Go back a few paragraphs. God's talking, I write, He is talking to you as much as to me.

Apart from God you can do nothing.  That's in the New Testament.  

There's been a lot more with me on trying to declutter. But the more I do the more I realize how much stuff has been in between me and my Savior.  Possessions are the second most accumulated in regards to things between us and God. The first, according to Jesus, is family and friends.  What?  Jesus said if we love anyone more than Him we aren't worthy of Him.  Love the Lord Your God with ALL your heart, mind, soul and Spirit.  That is first and foremost He said. THEN love your neighbor as yourself.  Not the other way around. 

What has taken God's place in your heart? Your family? Your job? Your fancy house, car, other possessions?  You and I will never find peace or happiness if our relationship doesn't have Jesus first in it.

We can have everything we ever dreamed of and still be miserable.  Scripture again says What would it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?

We do have the curse of having to work for a living.  Adam was told that after his fall. But work should never be the end all to finding happiness.  Many millions of marriages have been destroyed in pursuit of happiness in the success of a job. 

Is success such an important thing to you in this life that you pushed God aside?
Has your 'rights' become such an important thing in your life that you pushed God aside?
Is your will so important to you in this life that you pushed God aside?
Have you been wasting the precious time allotted to you in this life on worthless efforts to make YOU happy?

Are you real enough with you that you look in the mirror and see an exhausted man or woman who is really struggling to survive?

Then maybe today you begin decluttering your mental life. Your Spiritual life. Your emotional life. Then work on your physical life.  

Jim Reeves sang a short song a long time ago but it is indeed timeless. "How Long has it Been".

How long has it been since you talked with the Lord And told him your heart's hidden secrets?
How long since you prayed how long since you stayed On your knees till the light shone through?
How long has it been since your mind felt at ease?
How long since your heart knew no burden
Can you call him your friend? How long has it been since you knew that he cared for you?
How long has it been since you knelt by your bed and prayed to the Lord up in heaven?
How long since you knew that he'd answer you And would keep you the long night through?
How long has it been since you woke with the dawn and felt that the day's worth the living?
Can you call him your friend, how long has it been since you knew that he cared for you?

How long had it been since you talked with the Lord? 

You are pulled so many ways in this world.  Go the only way that will matter in God's eyes. 

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