Inspecting the Fruit

Contemplating why yesterday afternoon was painful for me.

I felt stressed. Defeated. Frustrated. Ashamed. Fearful. Ugly. Useless.

I had a good sob-fest in my room like any rational adult woman would ;-) And I woke this morning with very puffy eyes...and the voice of the Holy Spirit whispering gently, "wanna talk about it?"

I opened my Bible to Luke chapter 14, which is an interesting series of messages that go something like:

1. Hate all else and follow me
2. Pick up your cross and follow me
3. Count the cost
4. Give up all to be my disciple

Bottom line...surrender ALL to Him.

The Holy Spirit was so tender when He said, "The reason those two areas are so painful for you is because you're insisting on carrying them and they're simply too heavy for you. It'll always hurt you to carry them. And I'll allow them to hurt you because I want you to learn to put them in my hands and to leave them there. Have you had enough yet?"

My whole mind, body, and soul screamed "YES, I've had enough!"

But agreeing isn't the final step.

Actually gathering up all the heavy stuff and RELEASING it to Him is the final step.

Oh Lord, cast that junk FAR away from me so I can't pick it back up even if I foolishly think I want to!

Today is a day to inspect the fruit in different areas of my life.

I'll rejoice and be thankful when I recognize the fruits of a surrendered life...peace and joy and contentment.

And if/when I see evidence of fear, shame, condemnation, or defeat...I'll simply recognize those areas of my life as "big ugly heavy" things that require surrender.

He's a good Father.

He doesn't require our surrender as a way to make us poor.

He asks for our surrender because He knows it's healthy for us, and He wants His beloved to be healthy.

I want what He so compassionately and lovingly offers to lavish on us... all the good stuff.

I want total freedom from all the works of the evil one.

It's what Jesus came to do.

It's why he suffered for the JOY set before Him.

Thank you Lord, and please have the fullness of what You purchased in me and my loved ones.

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