Chapter 8~Giving Up What Was Never Ours

wheatAs wheat grows, the young sprouts rise above the rest. Their heads shoot up the highest because no grain has yet formed. In their immaturity, little fruit, if any, has appeared. But, as time passes and maturity sets in, fruit comes forth-so much of it that the burdened stalk bends and its head sinks lower and lower-and the lower the head the greater amount of the fruit.”~Elizabeth George

As a Farmer’s wife, this beautiful picture of wheat heads heavy with fruit weighs on my heart. I am a woman who desires nothing more than to say “Yes” to God. To pursue his will above my own. To make his field my field, and for my head to become heavy and bowed like wheat ready for the harvest. I want my head to bow to selfish desires, worldly thoughts, and pride. I want my life to bear the fruit that only he can grow. I want my head to bow to Him. And through all this want and desire to be a woman who says “Yes” to God, I stumble on rough ground and fail to see the Son that is supposed to help me grow. I stand in a field that can be unfamiliar and open to elements. But as I stretch and grow I find more often the Son. I grow in unfamiliar fields among the elements-out of my comfort zone. And I continue to push upward where the fruit will set in and come forth. It’s a process of growing and standing firm, but it’s a process that’s happening. And for that I am grateful.

As Lysa opened this chapter of our book, I became even more aware of the life I live and the life I want to live. That word “sacrificial” grabs at my heart. Thinking about the amount of trust I actually place in God and in His word, makes me feel ashamed. I know his presence to be real. I know his blessings first hand. I’ve heard his voice and feel his tug on my heart. So why is it so hard? Why is it so hard to just say “YES” and trust that he has my best interest at heart? Why is it so hard to trust that God has a better knowledge of what I need and desire than I do? Like the story of Lysa’s daughter and her ten-dollar bill, why is my hand so tight? Do you wonder the same? Just like Lysa’s daughter did not want to relinquish her ten-dollar bill, there are things I’ve not been ready to let go of. However, I am beginning to realize that I have to let go in order for God to use me. There is more joy in long-term, than the short-term.

God owns it all. We are simply managers of his resources. When we pursue the beautiful opportunities of sacrificial living, we freely acknowledge that truth and then reap the blessings. When we come to understand that we’re giving up what was never ours to begin with, we’re walking in radical obedience. (pg. 137)

My life is not my own. The “things” that God has given me are not mine either. I’ve always known that my horses were a gift, and I’ve promised to use them for His glory-however he sees fit. My children have been given to me for a time, but they are truly God’s. I’ve been given gifts, and it’s my responsibility to seek God and say “Yes” so that those gifts-those blessings-will be used wisely. This principle also applies to the gifts that he’s given me personally. I can not go through life with my hand clenched shut and be happy. There is a principle to giving and receiving. To reaping what you sow. And when we come to a place that we can give up what was never ours, I believe that we will live a happier more joy filled life.

If only I could learn to practice the presence of Christ at every moment, in every decision, with all whom I come in contact. Setting my heart at rest in His presence in this ways comes with practice and maturity. The more I practice His presence, the more I will experience his presence, and the more mature I will become. (pg. 137) Like wheat-growing in a field, the more I grow, the more my head will bow and the more fruit I will bear.

Harvest 088

In the comment section below, please tell me how this chapter challenged you. Do you find yourself living with a clenched fist?  What actions can you take to live a more open-handed life?

Read 1 John 3:18-19. How can you apply this scripture to your life?

 

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2 Responses to Chapter 8~Giving Up What Was Never Ours

  1. kareneklund says:

    My biggest challenge will be to “practice the presence of Christ at every moment”. I go on “autopilot” and just do what I feel I should be doing during my day. I need to remember to listen and watch for God in everything. When I remember to do that, I can feel myself filled with joy. I would like to grow to the point that my default is seeking God in all things at all times.

    This book has made the biggest change in me. I am so grateful for this bible study! Thank you Lisa! You are such a blessing!

  2. Cat Grisham says:

    I am a bit behind…just ordered my book, should have it this weekend, will enjoy catching up!!
    You talk about letting go, not clenching your hands & holding on. Years ago I went to Women of Joy conference, I remember a saying ” You need to give God ALL of your lunch, you can’t keep the dessert” I admit, I am bad about that. I want to keep the dessert!!! I give it all up to Him but then I turn around and take it back. I trust Him fully, and have faith just have a hard time giving up total…I guess, control. I know I just need to breath and let God be God!

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