February 28, 2014
Yes and Amen!
For no matter how many promises God has made, they are 'Yes' in Christ. And so through him the "Amen" is spoken by us to the glory of God (2 Corinthians 1:20, NIV).
Friend to Friend
When my son, Preston, was in sixth grade he chose to plant spinach for his science fair project. He planted seeds in four plastic cups and watered each batch with a fixed daily amount of four different liquids: water, orange juice, cola, and milk. (Yes, you are correct! By day three of his fourteen-day project, the milk cup reeked to high heavens with a stinky-sour smell!) His hypothesis was that he believed that the seeds watered with water would grow faster than the seeds that were watered by orange juice, cola and milk.
Once his hypothesis was determined, he and I (his faithful mommy-research-assistant) diligently went about the task of collecting data, watering the seeds, taking pictures, and documenting his findings. The instructions on the back of the seed envelope indicated that we should see spinach sprouts within 7-10 days. Preston was looking forward to seeing the sprouts and was eager to see if his hypothesis was valid. I was too.
So we watered and we waited. We stayed the course and did the work required with hearts that were eager to witness a green, leafy harvest. Day seven came and went. No sprouts. Day eight came and went. No sprouts. Day nine. No sprouts. Day ten. No sprouts.
When all was said and done, we were disappointed that his faithful efforts did not bear spinach. In fourteen days not one green sprout shot up from any of the cups. In fact, we saw no external evidence of any growth at all … not even on a root level. And although his data got collected, his project got completed and Preston received a good grade, we were both heart-sad that we didn't get to see any growth.
Sometimes our lives are like that science fair project. We invest in others and are eager to see the harvest. We obey God, trust His plan and walk according to His Word. We plant seeds into the soil of our marriages or dating relationships and water them with love, hope and truth. We plant seeds into the life-soil of our friends and co-workers and water them with loyalty, time and encouragement. As parents and grandparents we "grow" our children and our grandchildren. We water them with love, feed them with the Word. We water and we wait with great expectations in our hearts and a desire to see some growth. We long to see the fruit of our labor.
At times we see fruit. At times we don't.
Jesus gave His disciples a trustworthy promise that if we stick to His side and stay tight to God's will, that our lives and our efforts will bear fruit. He said in John 15:4-5, Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. When we remain in Jesus – when we trust God by turning to the Holy Spirit for guidance and to His Word for truth – you and I will bear fruit … whether we see it or not.
A person of faith believes God's promises because His promises are connected to His character. God's promises aren't flippant. They're secure! The apostle Paul said it like this: Whatever God has promised gets stamped with the Yes of Jesus. In him, this is what we preach and pray, the great Amen, God's Yes and our Yes together, gloriously evident. God affirms us, making us a sure thing in Christ, putting his Yes within us. By his Spirit he has stamped us with his eternal pledge—a sure beginning of what he is destined to complete (2 Corinthians 1:20-22, MSG).
You see, friend, the yes-and-amen promise here is that we will bear fruit, not that we will necessarily see the fruit in our own timing or even in our own lifetimes. Understanding this promise sure does help me to trust God more. And further, knowing that our faithfulness will directly impact how much fruit will be produced should challenge us to remain faithful!
All of the promises of our Covenant God are "yes" and "amen." We can trust His Word to be true because the character of our God is unblemished. Apart from Him, we can do nothing. When we remain in Him, we will bear fruit. Sometimes we will see it. Sometimes we won't.
Our God-confidence is bolstered when we remember that He is faithful, and that our job is to listen, seek, and obey – to remain in Him – not to try to control the outcome of the seeds that He instructs us to sow. When we grow in our understanding of His character and rest in the knowledge that He is for us, not against us (Jeremiah 11:29), this helps us to trust Him. Let's strive to be women who take God at His Word and believe His "Yes" and "Amen" promise!
Dear Lord, Thank You for planting a seed of faith in the soil of my heart through Your Son, Jesus Christ. Please grow my faith. Help me to trust You more and remind me to fix my eyes on You, not on the results of my life investments.
In Jesus' name I pray,
Now It's Your Turn
Are there promises you doubt God will fulfill?
Write a list of promises you have a hard time trusting God with. Then, write a big YES or AMEN across it and trust in God to answer!
Now, click over to my blog and tell me what you are trusting God for today… or just simply leave a comment saying, "Yes and Amen!"
More from the Girlfriends
Today's GiG devotion is adapted from Trusting God by Sharon Jaynes, Gwen Smith, & Mary Southerland by permission of Multnomah, division of Random House, Inc. Are you ready to begin a new faith adventure? Get a copy of the book!
Gwen Smith wants to help you think big thoughts about God and to inspire you toward His grace and truth. Her website is filled with videos, posts, songs and resources that will be a deep well of encouragement to you. Click here to visit her site. (Get a FREE song download when you sign up for her newsletter!)
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