“The Lord works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed… The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love… He does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities… as far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.” Psalm 103:6,8,10,12
“When you know how much God is in love with you, then you can only live your life radiating that love.” Mother Theresa
- Oh sweet friend, take a deep breath and be still. It’s time to meet with Jesus. What a wonderful privilege we have!
- Read Psalm 103.
God works in mysterious ways and at unexpected times when our hearts are tuned in to hear Him. I love that He is that way.
Recently, my husband and I were doing some normal maintenance and landscaping in our front yard. He was mowing the grass, and I was tasked with the job of trimming the vine. I wasn’t particularly excited about this job as it had been more than a while since I last tended to it, but I picked up my scissors and got to work.
I started my way working from the outside in. What I noticed was that this vine really didn’t want to stay put. Over about two months, it had the time to creep over to the front windows of our house. As I cut away the long strips of the vine, they had little sticky “leftovers” that left marks on all my windows and shutters. I was frustrated and wondering how I was going to remove it, since it seemed to be an impossible task.
It was then that God spoke right to my heart—as He does while I’m hard at work in my own world. As I stripped away the vine from covering my windows, He spoke of light and sin to me. Sin is like the vine I was removing, just waiting for the opportunity to grow and get bigger, stickier, and harder to remove. We are the house. We were made to be able to open the doors and windows and let the light and fresh air stream in. Our homes need it. It makes the day feel lighter and allows the breeze to pierce through the staleness of the indoor air.
For most of us, the vine, or our sin, grows slowly. We don’t even notice when it starts to grow and get thicker. It looks different for everyone too—it’s those little lies we tell that slowly get bigger over time, it’s an unforgiving heart that grows colder over time, sometimes it’s knowing the good we ought to do, and failing to do it…and the list goes on. After a while, that vine is out of control, taking over the windows and blocking out the light. We are inside our homes, trying to let the light in by opening the windows or blinds, but we can’t. There is something keeping the light from coming through—our sin!
Mama, we desperately need this Light! In this context, we are talking about the bright, shining love of Jesus that warms the soul and gives us hope. So many of us, in different seasons of life, push away the One who has come to tend to our souls. Jesus has been waiting, knocking at the door saying, “Hey, I know it’s been a while. I was just wondering if I can finally come over and deal with that vine. It’s free, no charge. When I’m done, you’re going to be able to open all the windows of your home and it’s going to look like new.”
How many times do we reject this gracious offer? Maybe because we are scared or ashamed? Or we think it’ll hurt too much or take too long? Friend, I want to bring some encouragement. Jesus is the perfect vinedresser. He is gentle and loving. We can trust Him. The truth is, we were made to need tending to. We can get caught up in believing that maybe we are okay and we don’t need help, but the reality is that if we don’t, we will be taken over. It’s the brokenness of our world that leaves every person in need of this divine upkeeping of our “vines.”
Take a few moments to read John 15:1-11. Allow Jesus to speak to your heart. These sweet verses remind us of God’s deep love for us and how He meant for us to remain in His love and receive His joy and light!
Blessings and Love,
Questions to Ponder
- What are some of the “vines” in your life? Take some time to list them out. Surrender them to God! Ask for His help and strength.
- As a mom, how can these struggles and sin you deal with help you to be more compassionate and understanding with your kids in their weaknesses?
My grandma used to tell me to imagine myself writing all of my sins on a whiteboard, all the things that made me feel ashamed or uneasy. Then she told me to ask God to remove them as far as the east is from the west (Psalm 103:12) and then erase them. The physical act of doing this helps us to truly surrender and know that Jesus forgives and is ready to help us and renew us! I encourage you to take some time this week to do this.