The Space

January 4, 2020
by   —   Audio controls are below the devotional to listen to this devotional or to hymn music while you read

Ephesians 4:31 – Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. (NIV)

Once all the Christmas decorations are taken down and put away, have you ever noticed how much more space you have? We have a large home, so even with the holiday decorations, it is not cluttered. But still, I am always taken by surprise at just how much bigger it seems when everything is put away for another year.

This year, as I was considering this detail, it came to mind that when we choose to put away bitterness, rage, anger, every form of malice, and anything and everything that does not line up with God's will, we are also creating more space within ourselves, our minds, and our hearts for the important things of God:

Galatians 5:22-23 – But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. (NIV)

When the fruit of the Spirit bedecks our lives, we shine within the world for Jesus like a brightly lit Christmas tree for all to enjoy.

So, this new year, along with taking down and putting away my decorations, I am also going to take time to ask the Holy Spirit to show me if there are things within my life that also need packing up and putting away. If there are, then I want to do it and do it quickly, through confession and repentance, which in turn opens up more space within me to know and to do God's will.

How about you? Any packing up and putting away that God may be speaking to you about?

Prayer: Father God, thank You that we can count on Your Holy Spirit to point out to us areas in our lives that need to be packed up and put away, that more room may become available within us for Your presence and our growth in You. In Christ's name, we ask You to show us. Amen.


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Listen while you read: "The Head That Once Was Crowned" (Lyrics)

About the author:

Lynne Phipps <lynnephipps@hotmail.com>
Atlin, British Columbia, Canada

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    Thanks, Lynn. Timely message!


    Thanks for sharing. I can really relate to this.


    GREAT reflection. Thanks,
    (CA)


    WOW! What a wonderful challenge! Thank you! Please keep writing often.


    Thank you for this. What a good spiritual exercise to do each year at this time!


    Great question to ask ourselves as we head into the new year. Thanks Lynne!


    Thanks Lynne, for sharing this timely reminder to declutter our lives! Blessings.


    Good advice as we enter into a brand-new year, Lynne. Thanks, and blessings.


    Hi Lynne, Thank you for that great idea. I know I will be packing away some sins.


    Dear Lynne,
    Thank you for the great analogy and the importance of confession in our lives. May God guide you wisely.


    Hello, thank you for this eye opener and I have always thought that too, how much more room there is when things are put away, never saw it in the Christian way. Thanks again.
    God bless you.


    Good morning Lynn,
    Good devotional this morning, food for thought for sure.
    We have a small house with small decorations, the last of which will come down today.
    Personal Regards and a happy New Year.


    Thank you for your message Lynne. It made me think of someone who holds onto the past and has a lot of anger and bitterness in him. If he could let go of this maybe then there would be room for joy, peace and love. I think all of us need to pack away some things that we are holding onto in order to make space for the things that God wants us to care / think about.


    Hello Lynne,
    Thank you for the inspiration your words provided for me. I was feeling a bit down in the dumps but after reading your devotional I felt really encouraged. Your examples and bible quotes really helped me to focus on what I need to do. Thank you very much.


    Dear Lynne:
    Just wish to thank you for all the wonderful Devotions you have given us throughout the year.
    May the Lord bless you as you continue to serve Him in the gift of writing He has given you.
    Thank you again. I wish you and your loved ones a Happy and Healthy New Year surrounded by God’s love and peace.
    God bless.


    Dear Lynne,
    What a special devotional you have written and the right idea of starting the New Year in a fresh way of packing away stuff and making more room available, especially to enlarge space in our hearts and minds for our loving Saviour.
    He is our great source of everlasting joy, peace, comfort and abundant love.
    Thank you for the precious writings you do.
    Blessings.


    You were speaking to me today Lynne. Many years ago three ladies formed the Civic Music Association at our Arts Center. One of them just cannot let go and she is so “sweet” about her remarks. I need to let go of her in a big way and put her away. She is amazing in so many ways but like a lot of us, has a few flaws. And I NEED TO LET THAT GO and work on myself!
    Our house is also large and it not only looks larger but a bit empty which has caused me to wonder if I should not keep some of our decorations such as a special nativity scene out for longer.
    Hope you and your family have a most blessed new year.


    Count me in!


    Hi Lynn,
    Thank you, your devotions resonate deeply with me. Happy New Year.


    So much wisdom in your piece. Thank you!


    O Lynn, yours is a wonderful retelling of the old rabbi’s fable – A man in a small village one winter, finding his habitation so crowded he felt he could hardly breathe, so the old rabbi counseled him to bring the cow in. Things seemed much worse, but the old rabbi told him to do likewise with the pig and the chickens and the dog and so forth. When the unhappy supplicant had had it, then the rabbi reversed the advice and out went the cow, the pig and so forth. Each time the asker said what a tremendous feeling of relief he had when the space seemed to open up and expand till things were finally back the way they had been at the beginning. You have brought it up to date in your retelling and it makes me smile.


    Dear Lynne,
    Thank you for a precious devotional.
    I am also going to take time to ask the Holy Spirit to show me if there are things within my life that also need packing up and putting away. If there are, then I want to do it and do it quickly, through confession and repentance, which in turn opens up more space within me to know and to do God’s will.
    Thank you for the very fine suggestion for us all.
    I pray that the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ will give us grace to follow through.


    Dear Lynne,
    I came across this prayer a few years ago. I do not know the author or date. I wrote it in the back of my Bible, and I refer to it often. I guess that means I need to!
    “Take O Lord, from our hearts all jealousy, indignation, wrath and contention, and whatsoever may injure charity and lessen brotherly love. Have mercy, O Lord, have mercy on those that crave thy mercy; give grace to them that stand in need thereof; and grant that we may be worthy to enjoy Thy grace, and attain to everlasting life.” Amen
    I have a vague idea that it came from an old Catholic Book of Prayer.
    Happy New Year.

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