Release from Self-condemnation

Devotions for those who are weary of feeling not good enough, regardless of the source of those feelings.

Tuesday, April 25, 2017

Day 7 Bearing Fruit

I've been thinking about Scriptures that warn us to spend our time on things that will bear fruit both in this world and the next.  It's so easy to become focused on things that just aren't important in the long run.

This looks just like my ride, except mine is covered
with dust from our gravel road, and the grill is held in place with
baling wire because of that deer that jumped out in
front of me....
Example:  I drive a 2004 Ford Escape.  It runs well, has never broken down, and I like the way it drives.  But I'm a little embarrassed by it.  Most of my friends have nicer, newer cars.  Should I spend $30k or so on a nice new vehicle?  No... our budget wouldn't stand the strain right now.    But...sometimes...

The Lord tells us to set our minds on things above, not on earthly things (Colossians 3:2).  Jesus tells us not to worry about clothes or food, but to seek His kingdom first (Matthew 6:29-33). And remember the story of the fig tree in Mark 11:

The lack of fruit on a tree that ought to have spent its energy growing figs rather than leaves angered our Lord (from the day 7 reading).  

All this doesn't mean we are to be slovenly in our appearance, or careless about cleanliness, or never to spend time making our surroundings pleasant and beautiful.  But we are to beware of making these things the primary focus of our lives.

The Lord is pretty straightforward about how to bear fruit for His Kingdom.  1) Love God first and best, and 2) Love others.  If we gain the habit of beginning each day by asking "How can I show love for God and for others today?" I think we are on the right track.

One of these days the Lord will provide us a new or at least a newer car, and I'll be happy about it, and I'll enjoy driving it.  Meantime I'll be grateful for Ol' Red, and work at putting my focus on things above.

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