Remember our celery? You can still grasp this devo if not, but see the last two devotions if you wanna know a little more about this living stick of celery. Imagine, if you will, our celery sprinting towards it’s family. Seeing them ahead sitting on the edge of a plate with peanut butter, waiting to be eaten. Celery wants to do whatever it can to get to them because if it can get to them it can help them. The celery SHOULD also refrain from things that will keep it from getting to them. So it looks down it’s path and sees a patch of dishes on the counter, so it deviates to run around them. Whew, that was a close one. It looks ahead yet again and sees a bunch of bananas perched beautifully BUT they are between the celery and it’s family. So again, celery shifts. Everything celery can do it WILL do to make the path to it’s family more efficient. Everything celery can do it WILL do to make sure it can get to it’s family before they are eaten. This time… there’s a point:
Hebrews 12:1-2 ESV Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us… (the rest of the verse we will discuss tomorrow)
Reality is, that when something truly matters to us we will do whatever we can do make getting to it or experiencing it easier. Perhaps it’s going to work. We purchase cars to get their easier. Perhaps it’s eating healthy. We purchase healthy food to keep in our home and simultaneously get rid of the things that usually tempt us over them. When we truly want something, we work to make accessing that thing/goal easier. However, we don’t do this with our spiritual life.
We often say that we are struggling being committed to the Lord and holiness, but aren’t willing to get rid of the things that are adding to it. We talk about how often we are tempted, or experience discouragement. Yet we aren’t actively working on removing the things that restrict us from success. We look at the situation and think “if we are setting up boundaries and stuff we are being legalistic.” NO! Self discipline, self control, good habits, those things are not legalism because we know that we aren’t saved by those actions (right?!). Those actions are a training tool we use so that our lives can be used better for the Lord. It is vital to train ourselves towards righteousness. That looks a lot like “laying aside every weight (and sin) which clings so closely.”
Weights: anxiety, extra bills, wasting time, social media?
Sin: sin. obviously lol. Things like lust, hatred, division, etc.
Everyone’s life is going to look different BUT I will affirm that it doesn’t matter what the “things” are in your life, if you’re keeping them they are more important. Whatever you’re allowing to tangle you or slow you are what your heart deems important. If you are allowing things to be in your life that are pulling you away from righteousness then those things are inevitably more important than righteousness. We are called to lay aside all of these things, prune our lives, shape them to improve the path to righteousness! The Spirit’s job is to convict us and lead us to righteousness… So… if you aren’t actively shaping your life and pruning these things then you likely aren’t listening to the Spirit.
I’m going to continue this devotion tomorrow, but today’s call: Let us ask the Spirit to guide us into laying aside the things that are slowing us from being transformed into Christ’s image. Let us petition for God to guide us to make the path easier! Our celery family is about to be eaten, and we need to get there. #CeleryLivesMatter.
Spend 1 minute thanking God for giving you the power to get rid of sin through the Spirit. Then spend 2-3 minutes asking God to help you see the things that are keeping you from running your race. Some things will be super obvious, and other things will not be fun getting rid of (because you value them more). SO maybe spend 1 of those 2-3 minutes asking God to help you truly value Him and be ok with making these changes.
Develop a good relationship with someone so that you can have them speak into your life. Be intentional with asking one another “hey do you see things in my life that are slowing me down and entangling me, keeping me from running more efficiently?” Sometimes you won’t see the problems and a good friend can truly help you grow. —-