GDW Devotional – 10-23-08- by Steve Troxel
Let it Die
During the three short years of Jesus’ earthly ministry, He performed many miracles and preached to crowds large and small. But the moment of greatest acceptance came the week before Jesus was crucified as He entered Jerusalem riding on a donkey. A large number had gathered from all over Israel in preparation of the Passover: “They took palm branches and went out to meet Him, shouting ‘Hosanna! Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord! Blessed is the King of Israel!'” (John 12:13).
Many would view this as the high point of Jesus’ ministry. He had gained a great following and the people even hailed Him as the new King of Israel. But Jesus knew this was not His Father’s will. Jesus came for a much greater purpose than to be a temporary king; He came for an eternal glory which required His death.
“I tell you the truth, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds.”
Jesus spoke these words in reference to His sacrifice on the cross which would occur in a few short days, but His message of death was also intended for us today. Obviously He’s not saying we should all be physically crucified, but Jesus IS saying we must experience a death; “whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for Me will find it” (Matthew 16:25). Paul explains this even more directly; “Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature” (Colossians 3:5).
Our earthly nature is home to all our sinful desires, but it’s also the source of all the ambitions and dreams not formed by God. When we tightly hold to our dreams and are driven (or drive others) by our own ambitions, we choke what God desires to accomplish and never see the full potential of Christ – never see the abundant life God desires us to live.
We have a tendency to dream and make plans, and then spend our time and energy pursuing the dream rather than truly pursuing Christ. Our dream may even appear very Godly – we may strive for a dynamic ministry or children who love and follow God – but until we allow EVERYTHING within us to die and be replaced by the love of God, we will never experience His very best nor witness His most beautiful fruit; “and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me” (Galatians 2:20).
Let’s allow the plans of Christ to reign absolutely supreme. We were created for so much more than we can imagine! Let’s cast off all sin and leave ALL we hold dear at His feet. He will raise up what He desires to use for the glory of His name, but first we must resolve to let it die.
I have found from my own experience, until I laid down all my personal ideas about what “I” wanted, all my pain, all my insecurities and emotional wounds… my total self along with my self centered pursuits, I was not complete and I was operating according to the world’s idea of happiness. The minute I died to the “old me” and put the control in my loving Savior’s hands I recieved the total healing of those old wounds and the knowledge and understanding of the Holy Spirit flowed through me. When I started working at seeking His Will instead of my own desires things, started working in my life.
So many years I didn’t understand the peace, love and joy that was possible by just trusting God to bring me to what he wanted for me. Our stubborn nature and tendency to let Satan have our ear and minds, cuts us off from the total joy and fruits of the spirit, that by nature we crave. It is the hardest thing I’ve ever done, learning to trust God completely, and it is a process that I will continue with to the grave. I slip and slide some, but I know, in the end my loving Father will make it all worth the work. The rewards have been beyond anything I ever expected. May God Bless you and keep you in his loving arms.
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