I would like for you to read the scripture several times before going into the devotion. I am only going to focus on Luke 6:43-45, however verses 37-42 are a good reminder for us as well.
A Tree and Its Fruit
43 “No good tree bears bad fruit, nor does a bad tree bear good fruit. 44 Each tree is recognized by its own fruit. People do not pick figs from thornbushes, or grapes from briers. 45 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.
These are tough scriptures for us all to read. These are the kinds of scriptures you cannot escape; they are bold, demanding, and matter of fact. These scripture states it is our responsibility to control what we say and do. It does not matter what anyone else does, we are in control of our own actions, and words. As I was studying these scriptures this week, I read an article saying, “ God assigns tasks according to what He sees in your heart. Right now, how big would your assignment be from God? Ponder on that statement for just a moment. If God assigns tasks according to what He sees in your heart. Right now, how big would your assignment be from God? Wow what a question? So then I began to think back on my week, and what God was trying to teach me. I have been around long enough to know, if we are willing to learn, there is always a lesson to be taught. I am currently being considered to be on the WinShape 2014 writing team. This would be such an awesome experience, and so much fun, but I felt God in the quietness of my office ask, “Will you be ready if afforded the opportunity? Is there anything in your spirit that you need to correct?” We all know from experience that God does not stir questions in us, that he does not already know the answer. So I began to search and pray about how I look in His eyes.
Phillips Brooks said, “Do not pray for easy lives, pray to be stronger men. Do not pray for tasks equal to your powers, pray for powers equal to your task. Then the doing of your work shall be no miracle, but you shall be a miracle.” It was a great moment when I read this because I realized I had been doing my job all wrong and backwards. I should have been praying all along for God to give me power to match my tasks, not to make the task I was conquering easier. L.R. Scarborough had even tougher words to say. “If your place is not great enough to suit you, make it so. The minister who is unable to make a place great is too weak to hold a great one.”
EM Bounds- “Men are God’s method. The Church is looking for better methods; God is looking for better men”
You see there are no shortcuts to Character. Character is what God builds in us through circumstances. Character building is like on the job training. You can always take a shortcut, but in the end you might lack what you need for that BIG assignment from God. Usually we do not like character building because it involves difficult situations. God wants to grow us to the point; of no matter what we are faced with, we produce good fruit. Remember the verse we read earlier: A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.
So when we face those tough situations in life, we must remember there is always a lesson to be learned. Things will always be unfair as long as we are on this earth. Our job as Christians is to remember that one day we will all stand before God. Mathew 12:36 I tell you that on the day of judgment, people will give an account for every worthless word they speak. May we on our day of judgment not be found with worthless Words of speech, but things that will bear good fruit.
What will God write down about your life today? Will it be worth writing down?
His Plan For Me
When I stand at the Judgment Seat of Christ
And He shows His plan for me,
The plan of my life as it might have been
Had He had His way - and I see
How I blocked Him here, and checked Him there,
And I would not yield my will,
Will there be grief in my Savior's eyes, Grief though He loves me still?
Would He have me rich and I stand poor,
Stripped of all but His grace,
While memory runs like a hunted thing,
Down the paths I cannot retrace.
Lord, of the years that are left to me
I give them to Thy hand
Take me and break me and mold me,
To the pattern that Thou hast planned! -Author Unknown