Saturday, March 30, 2013

March 30, 2013 … Going Deep To Thrive In Christ

Daily Berry Patch Devotions in 2013 - Day 89

Passage of the Day: Jeremiah 17: 7 [in the context of verses 5-8] [NLT] …
5 This is what the LORD says: “Cursed are those who put their trust in mere humans and turn their hearts away from the LORD. 6 They are like stunted shrubs in the desert, with no hope for the future. They will live in the barren wilderness, on the salty flats where no one lives. 
7 “But blessed are those who trust in the LORD and have made the LORD their hope and confidence. 8 They are like trees planted along a riverbank, with roots that reach deep into the water. Such trees are not bothered by the heat or worried by long months of drought. Their leaves stay green, and they go right on producing delicious fruit. 
Contextual Study of today’s passage: Jeremiah, Chapter 17 [NLT] … Go to this link

Reference Passage #1: Proverbs 3: 5-6 : [Repeated for the nth time this year!] …[NKJV] … 
Trust in the LORD with all your heart; and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him; and He will direct your paths.

Reference Passage #2: Psalm 1: 3 : [Driving the roots of our relationship with God deep in the soil of my faith produces fruit. ] [NLT] … 
3 They [faithful believers] are like trees planted along the riverbank, bearing fruit each season without fail. Their leaves never wither, and in all they do, they prosper.

Reference Passage #3: John 15: 5 : [Being connected to the Vine.] …[NLT] … 
5 “Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in Me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing. ..."

My Journal for Today: Today Os Hillman and God’s Spirit took me all over His truth with God’s enlightening reminder that I need to remain connected deeply in my relationship with my Lord to have the sustenance to grow and thrive. And staying “connected” to the Vine is essential to be a fruitful believer, as is the word picture of both David, the Psalmist, and Jesus, my Savior (see verses from Psalm1 and John 15 copied above).

 And Jeremiah taught this forcefully as well (see the highlight passage above) … that God can only bless the believer with His “amazing grace” who trusts in the Lord; and, as Prov. 3: 5-6 reminds us again, that believer leans not on his own understanding, but relies fully and deeply in God’s love and His sustenance, which only comes when we’re deeply connected to Him in faith.

 And Hillman uses a very descriptive word picture to make his teaching point today. He writes, “…whenever a plant lives in an arid climate, the roots drive deeper and deeper into the soil to get the water they need. This forces the plant to develop a root system that is far beyond the normal plant because it is forced to go deeper to gain the water it needs. Sometimes God forces us to go deeper into the grace of His love in order to build a greater foundation in our own lives. These lean times are designed to accomplish this in us. If you find yourself in this condition, ask the Lord who provides the water for our soul for the grace you need today to continue to bear fruit in the desert.”

 And again, If you look. as I indicated above, that was also the word picture developed by both David and Jesus in Psalm 1: 3 and John 15: 5.

 My friends, we will not be fruitful as Christians unless and until we let our roots go deep into the soil of God’s love and His grace so that we can tap into the rich supply of living waters He has for the believer whose faith drives those roots deep so as to grow in Him. I pray that I’m willing (as are you) to drive my (our) roots deep in faith into the sustaining grace our Lord has for us to thrive in our relationship with Him.

My Prayer for Today … Lord, I go deep to receive Your grace. … Amen

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