Leaves – Objects and Actions

The seasons change. Summer leaves and fall arrives. The leaves are displaying brilliant colors. Leaves are falling from the trees. People are raking piles of crunchy, dry leaves. Leaves, leaves, leaves! This causes me to think about scriptures that include the word leave. Yes, I know leaves and leave are two very different things, but let me share what I have discovered about leave. There are scriptures that assure us God will never leave us. There are other verses that instruct us to leave. Occasionally, we are told to leave something or someone alone.

While people may be creating piles of tree leaves, let us gather scriptural leaves.

God never leaves:

God told Jacob in a dream that He would not leave him. He also told Joshua He would not leave him.
What’s more, I am with you, and I will protect you (Jacob) wherever you go. One day I will bring you back to this land. I will not LEAVE you until I have finished giving you everything I have promised you.Genesis 28:15 NLT
No one will be able to stand against you (Joshua) all the days of your life. As I (God) was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never LEAVE you nor forsake you.Joshua 1:5

Moses shared with the Israelites God’s promise not to leave them.
Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you(the Israelites); He will never LEAVE you nor forsake you.Deuteronomy 31:6

Although Jesus told His disciples He would leave them, He also told them that He would not be leaving them because the Holy Spirit would come.
It was just before the Passover Festival. Jesus knew that the hour had come for Him to LEAVE this world and go to the Father. John 13:1
The world cannot receive Him (the Holy Spirit), because it neither sees Him nor knows Him. But you do know Him, for He abides with you and will be in you. I (Jesus) will not LEAVE you as orphans; I will come to you.John 14:17-18

Because of God’s faithfulness throughout history, we are assured He will not leave us.
Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I LEAVE you; never will I forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5

There are times to leave:

God spoke to Abram and Paul directing them to leave a specific location.
The LORD had said to Abram, “LEAVE your native country, your relatives, and your father’s family, and go to the land that I will show you.” Genesis 12:1 NLT
the Lord speaking to me (Paul). “Quick!’”He said. “LEAVE Jerusalem immediately, because the people here will not accept your testimony about Me.” Acts 22:18

God may instruct us to leave a particular lifestyle.
LEAVE your simple ways and you will live; walk in the way of insight. Proverbs 9:6
Jesus’ words to the woman caught in adultery, “Go now and LEAVE your life of sin.” John 8:11
Therefore LEAVING the elementary teaching about the Christ, let us press on to maturity, not laying again a foundation of repentance from dead works and of faith toward God, – Hebrews 6:1 NASB

Jesus shared how a shepherd might leave many sheep to find one that is lost. He was giving an example of what He would do for those lost in sin.
Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he LEAVE the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it?Luke 15:4

Jesus lived a life of coming and going. He left heaven to come to earth. Thirty-three years later, He left earth to return to heaven.
It was just before the Passover Festival. Jesus knew that the hour had come for Him to LEAVE this world and go to the Father. Having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them to the end.John 13:1

May we be sensitive to the Lord’s leading for when to leave a location or a lifestyle.

There are times to leave someone or something alone:

As involved as Jesus was in the lives of those around Him, there were times He told people to leave others alone.
LEAVE her alone,” said Jesus. “Why are you bothering her (Mary who anointed Jesus feet)? She has done a beautiful thing to Me.” Mark 14:6

Gamaliel gave similar instructions when the apostles were persecuted.
Therefore, in the present case I advise you: LEAVE these men alone! Let them go! For if their purpose or activity is of human origin, it will fail.Acts 5:38

Wisdom is requred to know when to act and when not to act. Paul gives good advice to us as well as the Romans.
Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but LEAVE room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is Mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.Romans 12:19

There are leaves in abundance whether referring to leaves of trees or leaves of scripture.

I love the promise that the Lord will never leave us. Jesus told the disciples in Acts 1:4, “Do not LEAVE Jerusalem, but wait for the gift My Father promised, which you have heard Me speak about. Each day I receive a new impartation of this gift – the Holy Spirit. It is through the presence of the Holy Spirit in me that God never leaves me.

Referring to the Holy Spirit, Jesus said in John 14:27, “Peace I LEAVE with you; My peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. I am thankful for the Holy Spirit who never leaves me. He shows me when to leave. He also helps me know when it is best to leave a situation in His hands. He gives me peace in all circumstances.

I love the autumn tree leaves that never fail to appear during this season. I also love the promised leaves of scripture that never fail whatever the season.

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Into-Me-see and Into-me-see

One definition for intimacy is closeness. With a few changes to this word, it could be phonetically pronounced “into me see”. Nothing is held back during intimacy. To spiritually define intimacy, I hear God saying “into-Me-see.” My response is “into-me-see.” God is a relational God and He desires intimacy. He created me for intimacy with Him. I am created in His image. So, I too, want intimacy.

Intimacy is often associated with love expressed between a husband and wife. I perceive four things transpiring in physical intimacy. There is penetration and receptivity. This results in consummation with the possibility of new life. I believe physical intimacy is a shadow of the spiritual intimacy God desires to have with me. These same steps apply. John 3:6 says, “Flesh is born of flesh but spirit is born of Spirit.

Do I hear Jesus saying, “Into-Me-see”? God is an open book when it comes to revealing Himself. In fact, His open book is known as the Bible. I want to dig into His written word and let it penetrate me. May I be receptive to God’s written word (logos) as well as the Holy Spirit’s pricks (rhema). Psalm 103:2 says, “Bless the LORD, O my soul, and do not forget all His kind deeds.

The consummation of Jesus inviting me to “into-Me-see” and my response of “into-me-see” is known as faith. Ephesians 3:17 says that Christ dwells in our hearts through faith. There is new life according to II Corinthians 5:17. “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!

Although there is new life, the need for intimacy continues. God invites me to “into-Me-see”. Am I receptive in allowing God to “into-me-see”? I want to consider how well my soul (mind, emotions and will) align with God’s plan. Do God and I become one?

My Mind: What thoughts do I think?
Are they predominately positive or negative? When I allow God to “into-me-see”, then He will give me the mind of Christ according to I Corinthians 2:16.

My Emotions: What emotions do I most experience?
Do I show more love or anger? In I John 4:8, I learn that God is love. I Corinthians 13:3-7 says, “Love is patient, love is kind,etc. Ephesians 4:6 warns, “Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.
Do I yield to God’s peace or do I worry? Philippians 4:6-7 says, “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Do I feel more joy or sorrow?
Psalm 30:5 says, “Weeping may last through the night, but joy comes with the morning.
Do I spend more time believing or doubting?
Mark 11:23 tells me not to doubt in my heart but to believe and it will be done.

My Will: How would I describe my will?
Am I strong willed? Do I want my will or Thy will to be accomplished? In
Matthew 6:10 NKJV, Jesus taught His disciples to pray, “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done.”

Graham Cooke says that the mind will reason us out of what God desires. He also says that our emotions are not dependable feelings. We need our will to connect with faith.

Intimacy involves a knowing. When the “into-Me-see” and the “into-me-see” are consummated, there is a deeper knowing that occurs. Intimacy penetrates into the heart and does not stay in the head. Heart knowledge (knowing Him) is born rather than just head knowledge (knowing about Him). In Philippians 3:10 Paul says, “I want to know Christ–yes, to know the power of His resurrection and participation in His sufferings, becoming like Him in His death.

My intimacy (into-me-see) with Him is based upon His intimacy (into-Me-see) with me. In Manifesting Your Spirit, Graham Cooke says, “God loves to be close. He loves to declare who He is for me. His intention is always about a deeper relationship. He is totally committed to upgrading our experience of Him and to bringing us into a deeper place of rest, joy and assurance in Him. He seeks to develop the capacity in us for trust and faith at a high level.”

Cooke also points out that worship leads to deeper intimacy. Intimacy gives birth to trust and confidence. David says in Psalm 57:7, “My heart, O God, is steadfast, my heart is steadfast; I will sing and make music.

Psalm 86:9 says, “Worship the LORD in the splendor of His holiness; tremble before Him, all the earth.” This allows me to experience God’s “into-Me-see.” Psalm 22:3 says that the Lord inhabits the praises of His people. This gives God the opportunity to “into-me-see”.

I want to draw near to the Lord in order to see things from His perspective (into-Me-see). I also want to know what He sees in me (into-me-see).

My Reader, do you want intimacy with God? Do you want to see into who God really is? Accept His invitation to “into-Me-see”. Are you willing to allow God to see intimately into who you are? Extend an invitation to Him to “into-me-see”. Intimacy is Christ in you and you in Christ.

Listening to the Living Water

One afternoon while on vacation, we strolled around our hotel grounds. We sat down on a bench in front of a wonderful waterfall that serenaded us with tinkling, trickling sounds. The waterfall was a sliding stream of water that became a fanciful, frolicking falls seeking to splash upon our feet. It seemed like the water was talking. It was as if I were hearing water words. I desired to see and hear with my spiritual eyes and ears as well as with my physical eyes and ears.

Living Water is a description of the Holy Spirit. In John 7:37-38, Jesus says, If anyone is thirsty, let him come to Me and drink. He who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’” Jesus was referring the Holy Spirit.

Seeking the source of these sacred sounds, we trekked up the hill. When Jesus ascended into heaven, He returned to the presence of His Heavenly Father. Symbolically, as we ascended the hill, we were getting closer to the source of the falls and our faith.

The water originated higher up the hill. Then it cascaded down its course and rippled over the rocks. At some points, it was a tiny trickle. At other spots it was almost a rushing river. However, the water was always present. The same is true regarding the Holy Spirit’s presence. God never leaves us. He is with us at the low spots as well as the high points of our lives. He is with us during turmoil and tranquility. Jesus promised in Matthew 28:20, “Surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.

The water words I heard were Living Water. The Holy Spirit was speaking to my spirit. I may not have heard audible words but I was reminded of God’s Word.

The sounds of the waterfall were like laughter. Job 8:21 says, “He will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy.” I, too, laughed.

There was a resounding rejoicing revealed by the falling water. Philippians 4:4, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!” A smile spread across my face.

I let out a sigh as I experienced a calmness. I felt like I was responding to Jesus’ invitation of Matthew 11:28. “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.

I sensed a refreshing spray of Living Water in addition to wet water as we spent time by the falls. Psalm 23:2-3 says, “He makes me lie down in green pastures, He leads me beside quiet waters, He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for His name’s sake.

Simultaneously, my heart was flooded with joy and peace and hope. I felt like an overflowing waterfall. Romans 15:13 says, “May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

The Lord promises in Isaiah 44:3, “I will pour water on the thirsty land, and streams on the dry ground; I will pour out my Spirit on your offspring, and My blessing on your descendants.” There must have been a thirstiness within us that led us to this waterfall of faith. The afternoon became a time of worship at the water’s edge. The little waterfall was like liquid love that tumbled down a hill and then rested at our feet and in our souls. We were refreshed physically and spiritually.

Impossible Becomes I AM Possible

Imagine a little 2 year-old boy trying to tie his shoes. It is impossible! Dad comes along and ties the shoes for his son. It is possible.

Open your Bible to Mark 10:17-27 and read the account of the rich young man who wanted to inherit eternal life. It was impossible. Then read John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.It is possible.

Mark 10:27 says, “With man this is impossible but not with God; all things are possible with God.Matthew 19:26 makes the same statement.

In Luke 1:26-38, an angel told Mary she would have a son. Impossible – Mary was not yet married. However, Gabriel explained this would be possible when the Holy Spirit came upon her. Luke 1:37 NLT says, “For nothing is impossible with God.

Similar statements are found in the Old Testament. In Genesis 18:24, the question “Is anything too hard for the LORD?” is asked concerning Sarah’s ability to have a child. It seemed impossible because of Abraham’s and Sarah’s ages. However, it was possible because God was in control.

Jeremiah begins his prayer in Jeremiah 32:17 NASB proclaiming, “Ah, LORD God, Behold, You have made the heavens and the earth by Your great power and outstretched arm. Nothing is too difficult for You.

With man, impossible. With God, possible.

Possible” is defined as able to be done. If something is possible, it means there is the power or capacity for it to be accomplished. If something is possible, it is attainable or achievable. When the prefix “im” is added to possible, the meaning completely changes. Now it means something cannot be done or achieved.

I want to have some fun with the word “impossible” and make a spiritual application. Instead of thinking of “im” as a prefix meaning “not”, I am reminded of the contraction “I’m” for “I am”. Taking it one spiritual step further, I think of the name for God as I AM. In Exodus 3:14, God said to Moses, “I AM WHO I AM.” The impossible becomes possible when God, the great I AM, is involved!

Since it is impossible with men and only possible with God, where are we? Are we left in the realm of impossibilities? Definitely not!

Jesus says in John 14:16, “And I will ask the Father, and He will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever.Just as the little boy’s father helped his son tie his shoes, Jesus has given us the Holy Spirit as our Helper. The Holy Spirit helps us do what is impossible in our own strength.

Paul shares about pleading to have his thorn in his flesh removed in II Corinthians 12:8-10. “Three times I pleaded with the Lord to take it away from me. But He said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.What Paul thought was impossible to endure became possible when the Lord helped.

Romans 8:26 says, “In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.The limitations of our minds can make it impossible for us to know how to pray. However, the Holy Spirit prays on our behalf. Once again, the impossible becomes possible.

God helped Moses, Isaiah and Paul comprehend how the impossible could become possible. Moses declares in Exodus 15:2 NLT, “The LORD is my strength and my song; He has given me victory. This is my God, and I will praise Him–my father’s God, and I will exalt Him!The Lord says in Isaiah 41:10, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.Paul proclaims in Philippians 4:13, “I can do everything through Him who gives me strength.

Now for a personal application. I Chronicles 16:11declares, “Look to the LORD and His strength; seek His face always.” Then, II Chronicles 20:15 reminds me that “the battle is not mine, but God’s.If the battle were mine, I would probably lose. However, when the battle is the Lord’s, it is possible to win. He will help me achieve victory over any area where I struggle. Nothing is impossible for God!

Since what seems impossible to us is not impossible with God, let us ask Romans 8:31. “If God is for us, who can be against us?No one! Romans 8:37 tells us, “in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us.Being conquerors, implies possibilities rather than impossibilities. I want to echo the words of Paul in Ephesians 3:20 NLT, “Now all glory to God, who is able, through His mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think.

Listen to Joshua 1:9. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.Declare the words Job spoke to the Lord in Job 42:2 NLT, I know that You can do anything, and no one can stop You.” There is nothing impossible for God. Invite God, the great I AM, into your impossible situations.

How can we move from the realm of impossibilities to the realm of possibilities? Hebrews 11:6 tells us, “And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to Him must believe that He exists and that He rewards those who earnestly seek Him.Living by faith not only pleases God but allows Him to do the impossible for us.

Paul says in Philippians 4:4, “Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!Remember to rejoice because I AM makes the impossibilities possibilities.

Let us close by reciting the words of Nothing Is Impossible. Sing along if you know the melody.

Nothing Is Impossible
Through You
I can do anything
I can do all things
Cause it’s You who gives me strength
Nothing is impossible
Through You
Blind eyes are opened
Strongholds are broken
I am living by faith
Nothing is impossible!

I’m not gonna live by what I see
I’m not gonna live by what I feel

Deep down I
Know that You’re here with me
I know that, You can do anything

I believe, I believe
I believe, I believe in You

 

 

 

 

 

Gates: In and Out

I paused when I read Jesus’ words in John 10:9. “I am the gate.While I meditated upon these words, I also reflected upon my childhood experiences with a gate. Two gates. Did the gate have a similar function in both instances?

A gate allows for entrances and exits.

While growing up, we lived on a farm. Our home and surrounding yard were enclosed by a fence. The fence had a gate. The purpose of the gate was to keep children in and chickens out. Children benefited from the safety of a smaller space on a big farm. While chickens needed to roam freely, we did not want them destroyubg flowerbeds near the house.

Children in and chickens out. How does this apply to Jesus?

To fully understand the function of Jesus as a gate, we need to continue reading Jesus’ words in John 10:9. “I am the gate; whoever enters through Me will be saved.

I John 1:9 says, “If we confess our sins, He (Jesus) is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” When we are purified of unrighteousness, sin is out! In addition to forgiving our sins, Jesus also functions as a gate keeping sin out. Sin and chickens out!

Ephesians 1:13 says, “And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in Him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit.Ephesians 5:18 goes on to say, “Be filled with the Spirit.” The Holy Spirit lives within us when we enter through the gate of Christ. Holy Spirit and children in!

Let’s think about what we want to keep within our lives and what we want to throw out when Jesus is the gate to our hearts.

Out with religion and in with relationship. We experience more intimacy with Jesus when we allow Him to be the gate of our heart. Our faith is no longer simply based upon obeying religious laws.

Our soul is composed of mind, will and emotions. All three are affected when Jesus is our gate.

According to I Corinthians 2:16, we can have the mind of Christ. This is possible when Jesus is the gate protecting our minds. I Corinthians 2:14 KNJV tells us “the natural man does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him.However, verse 10 says that God reveals things to us by His Spirit. So, out with the natural mind and in with the spiritual mind.

Our will undergoes a change from “mine” to “Thine” when Jesus is our gate. Jesus taught us to pray to our Heavenly Father in Matthew 6:10, “Your kingdom come. Your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.We must let go of our selfish desires and yield to the leading of the Holy Spirit.  This requires humility. Philippians 2:3 says, “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or empty pride, but in humility consider others more important than yourselves.Romans 12:16 simply warns, “Do not be proud.” Ephesians 4:2 exhorts us, “Be completely humble and gentle.Out with pride and in with humility.

Our emotions are also affected when we allow Jesus to be our gate. Negative emotions must be replaced with positive ones. We want to kick out worry and fear. Philippians 4:6-7 NLT says, “Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything.. . . Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Christ Jesus.Jesus says in John 14:27 NLT, I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart. . . . So don’t be troubled or afraid.Then I John 4:18 says, “There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear.Worry out and peace in. Fear out and love in.

As a child, I thought it was fun to swing back and forth on our farm gate. This activity defeated the gate’s purpose. Proverbs 4:23 NLT says, “Guard your heart above all else.Make sure Jesus, the gate, is in control of what enters and exists your heart. What we allow to enter our mind, will and emotions affects our spiritual life. Let us keep Jesus in our heart and listen to the leading of the Holy Spirit. The Bible warns us about vacillating (swinging back and forth) in our faith. Mark 11:23 encourages us not to doubt in our heart but believe.

Whether thinking about physical or spiritual structures, we always enter and exit through gates. Physical gates remind me that Jesus is our spiritual gate. A physical gate provides for children in and chickens out. A spiritual gate keeps sin out and allows the Holy Spirit in. Let’s keep our gates in place.

Frequency

Have you ever heard someone make a comment such as “God told me…”? How did it make you feel? Did you feel like this person was speaking authentically or were you intimidated by someone thinking they could actually hear God speak?

Maybe you have been the person who has said “I heard God say…” Were you speaking these words literally or spiritually? What did you hear and how did you hear it?

Is it truly possible to hear God’s audible voice speak words? Yes, I believe it is. However, I also believe God speaks in many additional ways. Just because you have not heard His audible voice, does not mean you have not heard God speak. I believe God is always speaking in some way. But, are we always hearing?

I will often say that God has revealed something to me. He speaks to me through an impression rather than audible words. For example, I may be typing a blog post and all of a sudden I will realize I am typing words that were not part of my original idea. I wonder, “Where did that come from?” I realize it came from God. I was attuned to the leading of the Holy Spirit.

God is spirit and we are human. Having a human to human conversation is quite different from hearing God speak Spirit to spirit. Although we may not exactly hear words, we can sense in our spirit that God is speaking. Job 33:14 says, “For God does speak–now one way, now another– though no one perceives it.” May our spiritual ears be sensitive to the way God chooses to speak.

In Qualities of a Spiritual Warrior, Graham Cooke has said, “Never allow the noise of your circumstances to drown out the sound of the Spirit.”

God will speak to each of us in the way we are best able to comprehend. God may speak through the beauty of nature or the words of a friend. He may speak through inner feelings, impressions, or experiences. Maybe a verse of scripture or a couple of sentences in a book will jump off the page.

Whatever God chooses to speak, in whatever manner, His message will always align with His character. Psalm 100:5 declares, “the LORD is good.” Graham Cooke had said, “You need to be able to tune out the voices in this world that are not helpful and really tune into the voices that will sustain you on the journey ahead.” There are many voices and variables speaking to our hearts. We must discern what is truth.

Do you have a favorite radio station? Craig von Buseck has suggested that God may have His own radio station called WGOD. He emphasizes that God is always broadcasting. However, we must be aligned with His wavelength. Our ears must be accurately tuned to His frequency to catch the signal. Just as we carefully adjust the radio’s digital dial to the exact frequency to clearly hear a song, we must adjust our spiritual dial to God’s frequency to clearly hear His voice. Are you tuned to the spiritual station where you hear God? He may be telling you that He loves you. Listen carefully! He may be giving you guidance or revelation.

Webster’s Dictionary defines frequency as the number of times any action or occurrence is repeated in a given period. This can refer to the frequency of radio waves. Or, it can refer to the frequency of our moments spent with God. We must frequently listen to His frequency. What good is a radio station if we do not listen to what is being broadcast? What is the value of God speaking if we do not listen and obey His words? Samuel said in I Samuel 3:10, “Speak, Lord, your servant is listening.” God spoke to Samuel – and He still speaks to us today.

In Daily Fire Devotional: 365 Days in God’s Word, Reinhard Bonnke has said that we are conductors of God’s power. Prayer is the way we can connect to the frequency through which God speaks. Bonnke goes on to say that prayer is intended to be the grid system for transmitting the power of God into this powerless world. He points out, “the lower our resistance to the Word of God, the higher our power rating!” The opposite is also true. “The higher our resistance to obedience to the Word, the lower our operational power of God.” Hmmm. This sounds like James 4:6, “God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.

In Revelation 14:2 John says, “And I heard a sound from heaven like the roar of rushing waters and like a loud peal of thunder. The sound I heard was like that of harpists playing their harps. That was God speaking through spiritual wavelengths. Finding the frequency of faith is possible only when we frequently tune our spiritual ears to the correct frequency. We must be ready to frequently hear on God’s frequency.

In his book, Frequency, Robert Morris writes, “We are responsible to steward God’s spoken Word. Those who listen to God – receive His word with humble hearts and act upon it – will hear God again. God will not continue to speak to prideful people or those who do not obey what He has said. God is speaking all the time, but the only ones who hear are those who tune in to the right frequency through humility and obedience.” Luke 11:28 says, “Blessed are those who hear the word of God and obey it.

My Reader, what is God saying to you? Are your ears tuned to His frequency to receive His spiritual signal? How frequently do you listen to the message coming over His air waves? Remember Hebrews 4:7, Today, if you hear His voice, do not harden your hearts.

Summer Fruit and Spiritual Fruit

Fresh fruit! Peaches, cherries, pears, apricots and plums! Available during the summer.

Spiritual fruit! Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, good, gentleness, faithfulness and self-control! Available year round.

Fruit trees and fresh fruit are part of God’s creation. In Genesis 1:11-12, it says that God made “fruit trees on the earth bearing fruit after their kind with seed in them.” Genesis 2:9 stresses that the “trees were pleasing to the eye and good for food.”

Galatians 5:22-23 describes the fruit of the Spirit. Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control are the nine virtues of spiritual fruit.

A natural fruit tree produces only one kind of fruit. It is a fruit tree – not a fruit salad! During summer, the tree’s branches hang with an abundance of fresh fruit. Peach trees bear peaches, cherry trees produce cherries etc.

Spiritually, it is quite different. Spiritual fruit is singular and all inclusive. This fruit is within us rather than upon a tree. Galatians 5:16 tells us to live by the Spirit. Each of us is capable of bearing all nine  attributes with the help of the Holy Spirit. Excerpts from Psalm 1:1-3 declare,How blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, . . . But his delight is in the law of the LORD, . . . He will be like a tree firmly planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in its season and its leaf does not wither; and in whatever he does, he prospers.”

A peach tree laden with peaches does not just appear overnight. First, a peach seed is planted. Then it grows into a seedling and eventually matures into a tree. Over time, it blossoms and produces fruit. We can apply the message of Mark 4:28 to the growth of a peach tree.The earth produces the crops on its own. First a leaf blade pushes through, then the heads of wheat are formed, and finally the grain ripens.”

We can learn how to become a spiritual tree bearing good spiritual fruit by observing the growth of a peach tree. Just like a peach that starts from a seed, so it is with us. When we accept Jesus as our Savior, we become a new creation according to II Corinthians 5:17. When we are planted and watered in the good soil of His written word, we grow in faith. Jesus says in John 5:14-15, “Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”

Colossians 1:10 tells us to bear fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God. As with any fruit, we won’t see the full results of this fruit immediately. Over time, it will grow and our ability to offer this fruit to others will increase.

Matthew 7:17-18 tells us, “So every good tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot produce bad fruit, nor can a bad tree produce good fruit.”  

Jesus says in John 15:16, “You did not choose Me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit–fruit that will last–and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.” The fruit of the Spirit we bear will be lasting! It will not spoil like an overripe peach. Spiritual fruit is not just picked and eaten once. As we offer spiritual fruit to others, the abundance of fruit increases. In contrast, once all the peaches are picked for a season, there will be no more peaches until next year.

We can taste the sweetness of summer fruit in our mouths when we bite into a fresh peach. We can express the sweetness of spiritual fruit when we praise the Lord with our mouths. Hebrews 13:15 says, “Through Jesus, therefore, let us continually offer to God a sacrifice of praise–the fruit of lips that openly profess His name.” 

I enjoy fresh summer fruit that is produced on trees. However, I also desire to produce the fruit of the Spirit in my life.

It’s vital that Christians bear fruit in their lives—the fruit of the Spirit. But what does that fruit look like? In Jesus Christ we have the perfect example of what God’s Spirit should produce

It’s vital that Christians bear fruit in their lives—the fruit of the Spirit. But what does that fruit look like? In Jesus Christ we have the perfect example of what God’s Spirit should produce in our lives.