Sitting in Panera on Collins Rd, drinking coffee, reading my Bible and getting ready to work on my rough draft assignment.
This morning, I read from Ezekiel 19.
10 ” ‘Your mother was like a vine in your vineyard
planted by the water;
it was fruitful and full of branches
because of abundant water.
11 Its branches were strong,
fit for a ruler’s scepter.
It towered high
above the thick foliage,
conspicuous for its height
and for its many branches.
12 But it was uprooted in fury
and thrown to the ground.
The east wind made it shrivel,
it was stripped of its fruit;
its strong branches withered
and fire consumed them.
13 Now it is planted in the desert,
in a dry and thirsty land.
14 Fire spread from one of its main branches
and consumed its fruit.
No strong branch is left on it
fit for a ruler’s scepter.’
This is a lament and is to be used as a lament.”
How many Christians are like this vine? When they are close to the water (Jesus, John 4) they thrive, grow, bear fruit, stand tall. This closeness is marked by spiritual disciplines: scripture reading, prayer, fasting, giving, solitude, and worship, just to name some.
But the moment we withdraw, we become the vine uprooted and thrown. We dry up. Our fruit is burned off. We lie on the dirt, gasping for moisture.
Spiritual disciplines are not some checklist. They are the the work of God. And we would do well to participate in His work.
(I love the anonymous comments, btw).