Salvation Garden

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In simple humility, let our gardener,

God,

landscape you with the Word,

making a salvation-garden of your life.

James 1:21

Learning the things of God requires humility; a desire to know the Lord requires meekness. Humility involves teachability. Taken as such, God’s word has the power to make a salvation-garden of our life!

God’s word has the power to save us from ourselves, our sins, our pain, our sense of unworthiness and bless us in so many ways but only if we come to it with a humble, teachable spirit. Too many times though, we come to the Bible with preconceived ideas of who God is, of what He means, of how He operates in people’s lives and rather than let the word of God speak to us as it will, we hear what we want, we accept what makes sense, reject what doesn’t, try to complicate it, try to overlook the parts we don’t like and twist the ones we do.

What would happen though, if we wiped clean the ideas we have of God and His word and look at it afresh with a teachable spirit? What kind of seeds would be planted in the salvation-garden of our lives?

Seeds of hope

Seeds of forgiveness

Seeds of love

Seeds of healing

Seeds of deliverance from habits

Seeds of mercy

Seeds of grace

Seeds of joy

Seeds of acceptance

Seeds of belonging

Seeds of adoption

Seeds of freedom from everything that enslaves us

Seeds of provision for our journey

Seeds of value

Seeds of significance

Seeds of vision

What an amazing garden that would be!

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And all we have to do is approach the word of God with humility, let God plant the seeds, and stand back and watch as He produces a harvest in our lives that will amaze us and bless others.

Let my heart be fallow ground; may I always approach Your word with humility and a sincere desire to be taught by You. Thank You for the salvation garden You are growing in my life. I see evidence of new life, Your life, springing up all around me and in me and I am humbled by that. Open my eyes to the preconceived ideas I have of You, misconceptions that blind me from the truth of Your word and help me to be teachable. Bring a harvest in my life, I pray, that will bless others, I ask in Jesus’ name. Amen.

picture credit: Wikipedia.com and blueeyedenaissiempre.blogspot.com

 

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All Inclusive

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Six years ago, when we moved into this neighborhood, the lots across the street were mostly bare.  Homes have been built-in the intervening years.  Large 5 bedroom houses with very little yards and they all look-alike.  One day, out of curiosity, I read a flyer put out by a realtor.  This home had a list price of $300,000. and the list of features was standard issue stuff, but what stood out to me was that, although the house had the duct work installed for air conditioning, the air conditioning unit was an add-on.  It wasn’t included in the price.  That struck me as a rip-off.  A $300,000 house with no air-conditioning!

Recently, I heard a sermon entitled “Pain and Suffering”.  The pastor presented reasons why mankind suffers and why good people suffer and what to do about suffering.  And it was good stuff.  But the hope he offered about suffering was somewhat limited to our future in heaven.   And that struck me as limiting the death, burial and resurrection of Jesus Christ to simply a ticket out of hell and into heaven, even though, that’s no small thing.  Certainly not standard issue stuff, to be sure, but His atonement was for so much more.  He took our sins so we could live our lives here on earth without condemnation.  He broke down the barrier between us and God so that we could have a relationship with Him.  He took our sicknesses and our pains so that we wouldn’t have to carry them – here on earth.  Remember when Jesus prayed that God’s will would be done here on earth as it is in heaven?  That’s huge.  There is no sin, sickness, pain and disease in heaven.

Jesus saved us.  The word saved is the Greek word “sozo” which meant to be whole-physically, mentally and spiritually”.  It includes healing for our bodies as well as forgiveness for our sins.  All inclusive, if you will.   Here and now on earth with a future eternity in heaven.  I won’t need physical and mental and spiritual healing when I get to heaven, I will be whole there, I need those things here on earth.  And Jesus provided for them by taking them on Himself when He went to the cross.  It’s the total package; healing is not an add-on, it’s included in salvation. I believe this salvation gives us hope here on earth.  Hope that though pain may last for a season, it’s not meant to be a permanent guest.  Though sickness may come, the price for my healing, the price for your healing has been paid in full.  All inclusive.

What can I say Jesus except Thank You; those words seem so small in comparison to what You have done for me.  I am so grateful for the promise of heaven and all that it offers me.  I am so grateful that You were willing to take upon Yourself, not only my sins, but my sickness and diseases as well.  Thank You for the hope that offers me here on earth.   I look forward to the day I spend eternity with You in heaven and I look forward to the day my healing comes here on earth.  May Your will be done in my life on earth as it is in heaven. Amen.