At a recent visit to a Garden Centre, I purchased a rose in the clearance sale. The little plant was wilting and stunted by the restricting size of its plant pot. It was pot-bound. It would never reach the potential of its maturity and beauty in that pot because it was in the wrong environment. I brought it home, dug a big hole in the garden, mulched and fertilised the soil, planted the rose in its new environment and watered it well. God willing, by next year, I should see a significant growth in the plant as it adjusts and grows in its new environment. Eventually, it should reach its full potential of beauty and fragrance.
A seed can only produce after its own kind. A rose will not produce carrots, only flowers. An oak tree will only produce acorns, not cabbages. Thus every seed contains the DNA to produce after its own kind. The seed determines the fruit, but the environment determines the quality of the fruit or flower.
Every born-again Believer in Jesus Christ has the incorruptible seed of the Son of God indwelling his being. What an amazing fact! We have His DNA! 1 Peter 1:23 “Being born again, not of corruptible seed, but of incorruptible, by the word of God, which lives and abides forever”.
The world says, “You are what you eat”, but what is the right environment for a Believer to mature into “…the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ”? (Ephesians 4:13), which is our birthright in Christ. The environment for the growth of Believers is truth. Truth about myself is not necessarily attractive. So often we want to portray an image on the outside that is not a true reflection of what is going on inside of us. King David came to this position when the Lord was chastising him over his sin with Bathsheba, which he had endeavoured to cover up. Psalm 51 records David’s repentance. Verse 6 records his words to the Lord, “Behold, you desire truth in the inward parts, and in the hidden part you shall make me to know wisdom”.
Truth is an acquired taste. The issue is change, being changed from the earthly into the heavenly image of Christ. The environment for change is truth. “Grace and truth came by Jesus Christ”, (John 1:17). They are the heavenly twins, married to one another. If I am in need of more grace, I must embrace more truth. I cannot have one without the other. Sometimes I do not like the truth of what I am, but if I humble myself before Jesus, repent of my lack, my undoneness, invite Him into my weakness, my failure, then stand back and let Him take control – indwell and reign in my heart. Only Jesus can live His life in me…..the life of the glorious Another, producing after its kind from His incorruptible seed in me….in me! Glory to Almighty God, my Father. How do I please my Heavenly Father? Embrace, make much of His Son who is the Door to all grace and truth and change in me. He replaces me with the indwelling, resurrection life of Jesus to show God’s love to the world.
I need to be delivered from being hurt by my lack and failure. Flesh is carnal, against God and can only reproduce after its own kind. However, when I humble myself, acknowledge my need to the Lord for change, (this is the truth I must embrace before Him), He gladly begins to work with me and guide me by His Holy Spirit, replacing my flesh life as I humble and make room for Him to help me make right choices, His choices for me. Soon I find myself enjoying the benefits of allowing Christ to live His life through me. Joy and peace are the hallmarks of His presence . I find new strength for daily life…”The joy of the Lord is your strength”, (Nehemiah 8:10).
If I refuse to embrace the truth the Holy Spirit is showing me about myself, I depress it, live the lie of pretense and stagnate. My growth is stunted, just like the little rose I bought. When I am living a lie, I am open to the devil’s visits. John 8:44 clearly states that the devil is the father of the lie, his child. A father has visiting rights to his child! To embrace truth is the only healthy spiritual environment I can grow in. The devil hates truth. It is light and he flees from it. He dwells in darkness and pretense.
Let us walk in the light as He is in the light, indeed Jesus is the Light! He ever calls us to Himself, “Come away, My Beloved….” “Come unto Me…..” Our spiritual journey is a continual growing season. The apostle Paul encourages us, Ephesians 4:15, that we “Speaking the truth in love, may GROW UP INTO HIM in all things, who is the head, even Christ”. It’s growing season! In the right environment we will automatically grow in spiritual health and produce good fruit to God’s glory. The fruit is always to be given away, to extend our Father’s kingdom. Keep on giving….
“Let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us and establish the work of our hands”, Psalm 90:17.
The Lord’s compassions for us are “..new every morning, great is Thy faithfulness. The Lord is my portion…” Lamentations 3:23-24.