Grab your shovel and a bag of…well whatever it needs!

Then he told this parable: “A man had a fig tree growing in his vineyard, and he went to look for fruit on it but did not find any. So he said to the man who took care of the vineyard, ‘For three years now I’ve been coming to look for fruit on this fig tree and haven’t found any. Cut it down! Why should it use up the soil?’

“‘Sir,’ the man replied, ‘leave it alone for one more year, and I’ll dig around it and fertilize it. If it bears fruit next year, fine! If not, then cut it down.’” – Luke 13:6-8

This scripture was recently presented in a class I attended as a call to intercessory prayer.  It was used as an example of someone rising up on another person’s behalf before God to spare them.  I couldn’t help but notice something interesting about this scripture that wasn’t pointed out in the class.  It says the owner of the vineyard had been coming around for three years to find that this tree was not bearing fruit.  When he ordered it to be cut down THEN the man in charge of the tree said he’d work a bit harder to save the tree.  He promised to really work to help it produce the fruit that would save its life.  It doesn’t say he hadn’t already been doing these things, but it is curious to me.  What had he been doing with that tree before that time?  Did he care about that tree before?  Had he been fertilizing all the other ones and just let this one go?  Had the fertilizer just not worked and he wanted to give it one last-ditch effort?

My thoughts are on parenting at the moment, so that is exactly where my mind went as this scripture was read.  It went to some of the areas in my limited years of parenting that I haven’t paid as much attention to some things as perhaps I could have.  It took me to some places in my family that I wish I saw a little more fruit.  It took me to some bits of revelation that I have been given for both of my girls that I had hoped for a different response.  It took me there and then it gave me hope.  It took me there and gave me direction.  It took me there and gave me a plan.

I realize the rest of the story isn’t made available to us in this scripture.  I don’t know if that tree eventually bore fruit or not.  I don’t know if the owner of the vineyard gave that guy a good scolding about his lack of attention to that tree over the past three years before he eventually gave him another shot.  Given what I know and believe about the God I serve, I believe he gave him the extra year.  After all, He is the author of second chances…he is the author of 3rd and 4th chances.  He is the author of 7×70 forgiveness.

It would be real easy for the enemy of our souls to convince us it’s no use.  Just let him cut it down…it has been a hard three years.  Look at that tree…you really want to put all that hard work into it?  You want to spend your time and resources to save that old thing?  It hasn’t produced anything yet…you really think one more year is going to make a difference?

Maybe I’m an optimist…I think it did.  I think that tree bore the best figs they had ever seen at the end of that year.

Are there things in your life that aren’t bearing fruit like you would like?  Have you been putting the work into it that you could have?  If you have, are you willing to circle that thing, dig up some things that don’t need to be there, pour some nutrients into it and see what might happen in one more year?  Perhaps it’s not time to throw in the towel.  Perhaps it’s time to ask Him for more time, a shovel and a bag of fertilizer and then roll up your sleeves.

 

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Whatcha holdin?

Let go! Stop holding on so tight! Pry open your hands! You AREN’T in control! My guess is you have either said these words to someone, or someone has said them to you. It’s funny…I’ve been on both sides of these words. In fact, I’ve been on both sides of these words on the same day. These words are much easier to say than hear…at least for me.

Why is this so hard? After all…I am a daughter of the King. Why is it so hard for me to give Him that final bit of control that I hold onto? Oh sure, I’ve given Him my life…most of it. I’ve told Him he could have all of it…more than once. I’ve given Him my kids…many times. What is that saying where you give someone something only to take it back? What do they call those people?

A very serious question came to mind several days ago as I was contemplating how to give God TOTAL control of my life…including my children. Is God bigger than free will? You see, if I give up control of my children then I have no control over how they choose. If I stop controlling the people around me I don’t get to choose how they treat me. If I stop controlling the people around me I don’t get to choose what they believe about my God. Uh, hmmmmm! I’m pretty confident in my ability to control others, huh? Well, if I am so good at this control thing…where is the fruit? Why do I look around me at a bunch of empty baskets? Why isn’t there a line of people standing outside my door waiting to hear what I have to say? Why aren’t my children sitting at my feet hanging on my every word? :/

I had only shared this “free will” pondering with one other person on this planet. Her response to that question was that God can’t be smaller than anything He created and free will was His idea. Then I went to a bible class on prayer and the very first thing the teacher said to begin the class on our voice in prayer was…God created free will. He put this whole universe in motion, created the earth and all that is in it and fashioned man in His own image with free will knowing the outcome…because He already knew the end of the story before He even wrote the first word. THAT boggles my mind. Thank God I am not in control of that! 😉

So…what does it boil down too? What is that magic word or moment or pill that will cause me to turn my hands palm UP, fingers spread wide open…and KEEP them that way? Is there just one? Or is it like a multivitamin for the spirit? I know WHO can place that desire in me. I know WHO is deserving of that kind of trust…TRUST. I believe Psalm 139 for me and you and you and you. I trust God to protect you and you and you. But what about those two precious girls of mine? Uh…He gave his life for them too. He created them. He has numbered the hairs on their heads too. He has written their days and their good works in his book. He has a plan for their futures. He gave them their free will. Who am I to interfere with THAT? His baskets are full of fruit. He DOES have people lined up to receive wisdom and knowledge and direction about their lives from Him. He IS in control.

I popped onto YouTube before I opened up this page to write. THIS was the “recommended” song on my page…:D

 

A little snap, crackle and pop…and it wasn’t in my cereal!

What happens when you turn on the light? Darkness flees…right? Automatic…right? What if you turn on the light and something is faulty in the wiring? Let me just tell you…it’s not pretty. Well, unless you like fire shooting out of your bathroom fixtures first thing in the morning.  But…the light still pierced the darkness.  Of course…it was short-lived because…well…I didn’t want a full-blown fire to break out in the Wade house this morning.  Upon further inspection of the light fixture, it was discovered that the wiring was simply worn out.  It had become old and crusty.  It appears that the wiring into the house was fine.  It appears that the light bulbs were fine.  It appears that everything was properly installed and grounded.  Was there any warning that could have prevented this fire?  Well, not in the fixture that sparked this morning.  BUT!  The other fixture on the same wall has been shorting out for weeks.

It’s a bit interesting to me that I have been thinking a lot about walking in the light.  I’ve been thinking about what it is like in the spiritual realm when the light gets shined on the darkness.  I’ve been thinking about what the ramifications really are when we ask God to shine the light on something and He does.  Truthfully, I’ve begun to notice that when I ask Him to shine the light on something…it’s not always a pretty sight.  Sometimes there are things I didn’t want to see.  Sometimes I receive revelation from Him that I am not sure I was quite prepared for.  Of course, He thinks I am or He would have waited to reveal it.  He would have continued to protect me from it if it wasn’t time for it to be exposed.

When I began asking God for revelation about my life I was talking about something totally different from some of the things He has shown me.  When I began asking Him to shine His light into my circumstances I had something different in mind for what that would be.  I had a picture of rainbows and flowers and beautiful sunrises and sunsets.  Beautiful, calm perfect days on the white sandy beach and a perfect, step by step, flawless map of how to get to that tropical destination.  This morning I had plans to flip that light switch on and get ready for my day.

HAHA!  LOL!  ROFLM@O!

God began to shine the light and there have been moments of sparks and loud popping noises and smoke.  There have been some beautiful things revealed by His light, but there have been some ugly things too.  Things that have needed to be brought into the light…so they could be healed, so they could be repaired, so they could be removed and replaced with something new and better than the old, worn out thing with faulty wiring.  Things that if left in the dark would potentially lead to destruction.  It’s not always pretty when you start seeing things, really seeing things that need His healing touch.  It’s not always pretty when you see things in your heart or the heart of a loved one that you didn’t know was there…or hoped you could ignore a while longer.

I wonder now if we had paid attention to that other light if we would have discovered the faulty wiring sooner.  We are thankful to God we were home when this happened.  I am thankful it didn’t happen on a day I had left that light on and walked to another part of the house.  I am thankful it happened right as I turned the light on so it could be turned off quickly enough to avoid a full-blown house fire.  I am thankful for the resources to replace the old fixtures with new ones that work just like they are supposed to.  I am thankful for a handsome fella that can do that kind of handy work around the house! 🙂

AND!!  I am thankful God reveals BOTH the good and the bad to us if we trust Him.  Thank God he is faithful to shine his light on both the things we want to see and the things we don’t want to see.  Thank God he gives us opportunities to see and repair things we may have been ignoring and provides us the resources and skills to do whatever it takes to move into a better light.