"The one who received the seed that fell among the thorns is the man who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke it, making it unfruitful." Matthew 13:22....."Have you ever found yourself considering a certain ministry or service, only to realize it's impractical because it would require too much a change in lifestyle? Or wanting to give more to ministries of the church, but realizing you can't; you owe too much to other people, or have too many plans about how to enhance your own environment?.......Many of us are there. The deceiver keeps us striving after an elusive contentment in status and things. He keeps us thinking that an adequate lifestyle is just around the corner. But it never comes." ChrisTiegreen....."Our whole life is taken up with preparations for living, so that we never really live at all." Leo Tolstoy....."He brought them to border of His Holy Land." Psalm 78:54
So many of us live driven, distracted lives. Few of us seem to really live His life. We are constantly surrounded by, mired in clutter of all types, but the greatest problem is the clutter within. This clutter grows by the day, and though we don't want to admit it, is our master. We spend great amounts of time sifting through it, trying to find just what we think we most need. But in the end, all we have is more clutter. Tolstoy's words become more true every day. We are constantly preparing for life, but we are not living it. Not the life He created us for and calls us to. Instead of living our lives on and in Christ, we build our lives upon what amounts to nothing more than clutter. Heart clutter. And this clutter offers us no real support or life at all. We live a life in the midst of debris. Spiritual, emotional, physical.
Tiegreen wrote of how all the stuff, the cares and desires of life, keep us from His life, and this is true. They keep us from bearing the fruit of His Life in the world of which we're a part. The stuff, the clutter, gets our attention, our energy, and our loyalty. The fruit of His Life is not flowing out of us. Worse, it is not flowing within us either. Our attention, even obsession with this life, keeps us from the knowledge of His. The result is a life that collapses under pressure. Sometimes even the weakest pressure. The church is filled with people who go into panic mode when the slightest interruption of their "life plan" takes place. Everything that gets in the path of where we want to go becomes a crisis. A crisis we are not prepared to overcome. Jesus said that in the world we would have trouble, but that we were not to fear, because He had overcome that world. Yet we do fear, and just about everything. So we are not overcomers, but overcome.
Anyone who knows the experience of having a cluttered work area, knows the frustration of trying to find something we need in it. We who live lives filled with the rubble of this world, seek in the time of need to find and lay hold of Him. It's not that we can't lay hold of Him, but that the clutter we have allowed to accumulate to soul threatening levels blocks Him from our sight and touch. The only result for us is panic, fear, despair.
Psalm 78 says that the Father brought Israel to the border of His Holy Land. He meant for them to enter into its fullness, but they had gathered far too much mental, emotional, and spiritual clutter for that to be. As a result, they didn't know Him well enough, or live in Him deeply enough, to trust Him, abide in Him, and enter into that land He had already given them. So, they turned back into the wilderness and the "clutter" they treasured, only to wander for 40 years until He had purged them of it. Are we standing on that border with Him today? Has He placed before us His Land, which is also ours? Will we step into it by faith, leaving all our clutter behind, and lay hold of the riches He has for us in Christ? Or, will we continue to cling to it, and once more turn back? Clutter or Christ? Which will we choose? Which will we serve? Which do we really call Lord?