Listen to this devotional:
Listen while you read: "Onward Christian Soldiers"1 (Lyrics)
Springtime is usually the time when I replant my indoor plants into fresh new potting soil. As I was transplanting the plants into bigger pots, I noticed that one plant had grown so much that it almost touched the ceiling. It was long and spindly. I decided to cut the crown off, hoping that it would grow outward, not upward. I put the crown into a glass jar with water so that it would grow roots. After a couple of months, I noticed that small white roots had emerged, and I could now put the plant into the soil.
Colossians 2:6-7 – Therefore as you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, so walk in Him, having been firmly rooted and now being built up in Him and established in your faith, just as you were instructed, and overflowing with gratitude. (NASB)
I checked the plant that I had cut the crown off and noticed that it had been set back, and had not grown at all. Then one day much later, I noticed the new growth. Tiny shoots were sprouting where I had cut the crown off. In like manner, sometimes God's painful pruning in our lives sets us back, but in the end, it will stimulate new spiritual growth.
Hebrews 12:7,11 – It is for discipline that you endure; God deals with you as with sons; for what son is there whom his father does not discipline? All discipline for the moment seems not to be joyful, but sorrowful; yet to those who have been trained by it, afterwards it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness. (NASB)
Likewise, if we cut ourselves off from spending time with God, learning His truth, and following in Christ's footsteps, we will wither spiritually, and our growth in Christ will be stunted.
John 15:4-5 – 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. (NASB)
Do you feel isolated and alone? Return to the One Who will never leave you or forsake you. Jesus waits patiently for you. Return to Him and He will give you His peace.
Prayer: Father God, so often we think that we can do things on our own. You give us free choice in all that we do and say. But we fail over and over again. Forgive us again, and bring us back into a relationship with You. Amen.