On Sunday, I so enjoyed getting to speak at my church, Flood.
As I was preparing my talk last week, I felt some important, freeing truths sink deeper into my center, and I thought I’d share them with you here.
I spoke from John 15, the passage where Jesus says he is the true vine, we are the branches, and his father is the gardener. We are to remain in him, abide in him, make our home in him (The Message) because apart from him we can do nothing.
I looked up the etymology of the word “abide” and was so interested to read that the literal translation is “onward wait.” We abide in Christ by waiting with expectation, believing he will move and work but not taking that movement and work into our own hands. Very hard to do, right? To live expectantly still.
I don’t know about you but that’s not always my immediate posture. To sit and breathe and believe . . . and resist the urge to spring into action and control and fix everything.
Christ calls himself the “true” vine, which made me think of all the false vines we try to hook into for our sense of worth, significance, and life. Our work, our kids, our marriage, our homes, other people’s opinions of us . . . these will never be true vines. They will never offer enough to sustain us. We know this, and we forget this.
One of the ways we live expectantly still, abiding, remaining is to remember each and every day that our life is an offering.
We show up with our little loaves and our little fish, our meager offering, and we hand it over to God. We are not in charge of feeding the crowds. He is.
When we believe it’s all up to us, we are not hooked into the true vine. We are hooked into the false notion that our worth is contingent on our production.
When I get caught up in how I’m doing, how I’m performing, how I’m being received, what I’m producing, I get nuts. Because there’s never enough. I can never do enough, say enough, be enough, produce enough to fill that void.
Instead, I’m asking God for the grace to simply see my work, my parenting, my day as an offering. I show up with my best. I receive his love and acceptance. And I let go . . .
I let go of what I think I want so that he can give me what I truly desire.