March 12 / Proverbs 12 / John 3

Nicodemus009

John 3:3

Yeshua answered him, “Amen, amen I tell you, unless one is born from above, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” [TLV]

I’ve been thinking a lot of regeneration of the heart, which only God can do. This is absolutely necessary in order to follow Him, in order for anything to do with the kingdom of God to truly make sense at all to a person. So I wonder, have I been asking the blind guy to look at the beautiful painting on the wall, then wondering why he can’t see it, or even look at it? Do I ask the spiritually blind person to follow God before his or her heart has been regenerated by God?

I grew up in a religious world that was heavy on conversion and light on discipleship. I have seen a swing of the pendulum away from this, some for good, but some seemingly away from the importance of that initial act of conversion, of the regeneration of the heart. It’s easy to slip into a saving of ourself by works of our own praxis, yet with great intention and desire for truth.

The problem with overemphasis on conversion is that it is only the beginning of the journey, necessary as it is. Then begins the life of running after God. But if God has really regenerated your heart, and you have been born from above, I believe totally that you will have a thirst for God that is both satisfying and paradoxically constant. You will automatically run after Him.

So I’m thinking out loud here, I know, but doing some good wrestling with this monumental concept laid out by our Master Teacher. Really, it takes even more pressure off us. Bearing fruit is not converting people at the heart level, but living and giving God’s truth and love. Much fruit will come of this, for sure.

Jesus told me a couple years back, “I’ll call them, you lead them to me.” This is what makes ministry pretty simple. I understood Jesus to mean a calling at the heart level, that which is impossible for me to do. All I must do is follow Him from my heart, and provide space, guidance,  and pathways for others to get closer to Him.

I leave much up to mystery.

Does any of this make sense?

Is anybody reading this?

Proverbs 12:3,12

The root of the righteous will never be moved.

The root of the righteous bears fruit.

Always concentrate on the roots not the fruits.

A tree with no roots will never bear fruit. All we generally see is the fruit of the tree, the good works of a person or church. But where do they flow from? From that which is unseen.

…we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we can see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever. [2 Cor. 4:18]

All the authors I love and am encouraged by spent much time alone with God. Loving Him, being loved by Him. Much time in silence just thinking. Those are the roots from which the fruit flows.

We do not emphasize this enough I’m afraid.

What is your root system?

 

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