My new Spring sprouts
Last week, I had the privilege of creating a beautiful spring garden with my friend, Bethany. She and I planned a simple garden and played in the dirt together. Taking the old soil and mixing it with worm casting and rich organic soil, the most important step in planting new herbs, vegetables and fruits.
Like preparing good soil in a garden, we are wise to daily "mix in" the Word of God in our minds. Today’s blog hopefully encourages you to plant deep in your souls beautiful truths to sprout love and grace. We not only can have a prolific garden but a healthy mind can change our attitudes and behavior to be who we want to be!
Creating a garden in our minds needs to be intentional. Otherwise, other lies and deceptions could be the plants that grow in the mind. I’ll start with these two verses:
“And the Lord will guide you continually and satisfy your desire in scorched places and make your bones strong and you shall be like a watered garden like a spring of water whose waters do not fail.’ Isaiah 58:11
“ Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12:2
We must choose to Renew our minds daily with our thoughts, good godly truth from His word and godly wisdom from insightful people, books or podcasts. This is the fertile soil that will cause our lives to be fruitful and prosperous. If we don’t guard what enters our mind and hearts- We may allow lies, untrue words and false media to sink into our minds and then we go to our default button- Control. Unconditional love is not fear based leading to control but can be extravagant grace not knowing what our left or right hand is doing, but living in the Spirit.
So, three powerful thoughts of encouragement to your soul and to plant in our minds today:
“Jesus sees you beyond your failure- He sees you as you are suppose to be” Chad Vech
Stop and think about that- I sure did after hearing this statement in a sermon at Passion City Church -This spoke to my heart..
I know Jesus has redeemed me from past, present and future sins. But, sometimes the semantics makes the difference. Same truths we have heard over time but spoken a little differently. Jesus stands faithful despite our messiness.. He is not conditional.. We serve a faithful God. He can be trusted.
Again, God sees us as we are suppose to be - Redeemed.. not just when we like our performance on a given day. We are transforming into His likeness daily, but He sees the finished me and you..
Yes, this is a Beautiful truth…
So , be free and live like a redeemed child of the Most High God.. He sees you as you are suppose to be.. planting that truth sprouts grace and love to others. Once we grasp how God sees us, we then are able to love others because we meditated on the truth - "He sees us as we are suppose to be." This truth is so freeing..
Wildflowers in Austin, Texas
Second truth for today that I read was from the author Clayton King in his book, Overcome. Anytime you feel alone, invisible, unvalued or unloved replace the lie with this truth:
"In essence, there is a person or people in your life whose love and approval is so important to you, their perceived opinion of you is the single most powerful influence over how you view yourself and your value in the world. If you think they love, you feel secure and valuable. But if you convince yourself that they don't like you or don't even notice you, you will feel invisible and unvalued regardless of how many other people do indeed care about you.. so here is the truth to take away..
"What if you changed who "they" is? What if you replaced the most important person in your life and their opinion of you with God and his opinion of you? What if he became that Most important person?''(Clayton King, Overcome p. 56-57)
If Christ truly becomes the most important person in our lives, we can be ourselves being free of performance, scheming, impressing and trying to please others. Replacing the lie with truth, God loves us.. his love is constant never changing. When we put any person on the throne we make that person an idol.. "You don't have to fear being unloved because you are already and always.. No one to impress. Nothing to Prove. Nothing to fear" (Clayton King p. 58 Overcome)
Once we place God on our throne, the most important person in our lives and truly know his opinion of us we then walk in freedom sprouting grace and love to others..
We then can embrace this last truth for today:
"Celebrate you who God created you to be.. let others be who they are and love the way they love.. let them be themselves and let you be you. allow them to be their unique selves and allow you to be uniquely you.. You love the way you love.. allow them to love the way they love." (my sweet friend, Sally's words of truth)
There is freedom when you just be you and love the way you like to love.. (For me, I like to learn about others and see how they receive love- gifts, service, words of affirmation, physical touch or quality time. I learned this from Gary Chapman's book, The Five Love Languages.).
As my sister in law reminded me, God must increase and we must decrease.. So, focus on extravagant love to both the lovable and unlovable.. and not on what you didn't receive from someone.. just keep being uniquely you- loving others well.. knowing God is the Most important person in your life.. When you feel those lies coming on ask yourself the question, Who is the most important person in my life? What is His opinion of me? If God is the answer; fear loosens it chains, no more need to impress, truly celebrating who God created you to be . Giving love freely not needing others to take God's place.. As, Clayton says, "You choose who has the emotional authority in your life, when you choose God, the lies lose their power." (p.58 Overcome). Then, You are free to be you and let others be themselves.
True love is not controlling- Don’t live in Eve’s shadow- Replace control let go and and replace your frustration with lovely thoughts of his truth, compelling insights from wise friends or podcasts be planted in our fertile minds and hearts. Then we are able to offer true love and grace to ourselves and both the lovable and unlovable in our lives..
Jesus laid down his life for us and we can love others well once we are intentionally planting and watering our garden with truth..
What rich soil are you laying down in your mind, so that healthy fruit can thrive..?
It will grow what you plant….
I am choosing to focus on the above truths- God sees me as I am suppose to be, always making God the Most important person in my life, He is my Authority and choosing to let others be who they are and how they love and embrace who I am and the way I love..
A picture from this past fall.. where I love to just be .. Asheville...
As my friend, Sally says.. Be Free!!
My reads this month from two of my favorite authors:
Grace- A Bigger View of God’s Love- Randy Alcorn
Everybody Always- Bob Goff
My soon to be blooming peonies
Sprout Love and Grace
Have a beautiful week... Please feel free to share some of your recent truths and I would love to hear from you!