Back in 2003 after having spent the year before reading Sarah Ban Breathnach's book "Simple Abundance" I took her suggestion to heart and wrote my own daily devotional. Each day I took a line or two from one of the various spiritual authors from the last three centuries I was reading and wrote my own thoughts on the subject. I then looked for a scripture that illustrated the truth that had been revealed to me. What follows is the result.

"Our greatest bondage is to have our own way; our greatest freedom is to let God have His way." Warren Wiersbe

Sunday, April 10, 2011

April 10

“A living plant always bears fruit.  It is the law of its life that it should do so; and it is equally a law that this fruit should come, not by effort, but spontaneous growth.”  Hannah Whitall Smith, Daily Secrets, 4/10

Over 100 years ago Hannah said, “There is a vast amount of effort among Christians to hang fruit onto their branches by some outside performances.”  This is still true today.  I suppose it will always be for those who do not understand this spiritual law.  And it will continue as long as people feel they have to add anything to the work of Christ in order to be counted “good” Christians.  Sometimes I even wonder if we’re delaying Christ’s return because of so much effort on our part.  How much do we get in the way of God's power and glory being exhibited?  For one thing, we give the world the impression that Christianity is only about good works especially if it’s done from a distance and they do not see us loving one another, but instead see us finding fault with each other--not very appealing to those who feel down and out themselves.  How can they possibly live up to the standard set for them when they have nothing to contribute and are in need of love themselves?  They do not see Christ--they see "do-gooders".   Imagine what the world would think of us if all they could see were our genuine love for one another and for them?

“By this we know love, that he laid down his life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.  But if any one has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him?  Little children, let us not love in word of speech, but in deed and in truth.  By this we shall know that we are of the truth, and reassure our hearts before him whenever our hearts condemn us; for God is greater than our hearts, and he knows everything.  Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God;”  1 John 3:16-21

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