Monday, January 08, 2007
By Ramone - January 3, 2007
On January 2nd, Yoko and I were having dinner together at Denny's and opened a card that our dear friend Hazel in California had sent us for Christmas. In her card, Hazel thanked God for our friendship and in the midst of writing was given a word from God for us, blessing us and our child (due March 13th) and saying that he is the first fruit -- the material of what He is bringing & will continue to bring forth in our lives as we lay them down for His Kingdom & glory. (Each of our lives are spiritual "wombs", in which God gives birth to the purposes of His heart... our soon-to-be-born son is a literal "fruit from the womb"!)
Yoko and I talked about the part which said "as we lay our lives down"...
It's like Jesus said, if we hold on too tight, we'll lose our things, but if we release them then He'll bring beautiful things from them and life & blessing for others & us.
We're like a tree -- if we let go of our beautiful fruit, then it'll make new trees, new shade, new branches for birds, new food for people...! But if we hold onto it too long, it will be rotten. It is meant to fall and die. That is how it blesses everyone.
Sometimes we have good fruits in our lives -- projects, ministries, meetings, good times, mentors, friendships, etc. But then we notice one day that they're gone! And we're really sad about it. Often we try to hold on longer than we should, but it kills the fruit and kills its ability to bless others. God gives us "fruit" so that we can let go of it and bless others. The fruit He gives us is precious, beautiful, and it tastes good---just like He meant it to. But we must never forget where it came from (from Him!), and we must never hesitate to let it drop to the ground for His sake and the sake of those He can bless with it. We think it will fall and die, but He is the God of resurrection who brings life out of death!
"Very truly I tell you, unless a kernel of wheat falls to the ground and dies, it remains only a single seed. But if it dies, it produces many seeds. Those who love their life will lose it, while those who hate their life in this world will keep it for eternal life."
"Listen carefully: Unless a grain of wheat is buried in the ground, dead to the world, it is never any more than a grain of wheat. But if it is buried, it sprouts and reproduces itself many times over. In the same way, anyone who holds on to life just as it is destroys that life. But if you let it go, reckless in your love, you'll have it forever, real and eternal."
- John 12:24 (TNIV & MSG)