Matthew 7:16a “By their fruit you will recognize them.” (NIV)
Last week’s devotion, Ephesians 5:13-14b, challenged you be in the Word: “But everything exposed by the light becomes visible, for it is light that makes everything visible. Christ will shine on you." (NIV) Getting into God’s Word is critical, but only the first step. A gentleman I know was unemployed and looking for a job. I would ask him how the job search was going. He would share all types of opportunities. When asked how they were progressing, he would say that he was working on his resume and that he had to go online to complete the application; in fact, he had a whole list of excuses why he had not applied yet. The same is true in reading the Word of God. We must read and respond to it to let “Christ shine on us.”
Exposing yourself to the Word exposes yourself to God. As God begins to impress His life on you, it is now up to you to respond. James 1:25 shares that the blessing is in obeying the Word: “But the man who looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues to do this, not forgetting what he has heard, but doing it — he will be blessed in what he does.” (NIV) Yielding to the Word in obedience frees the Holy Spirit to work in you. Merely reading, but not obeying, stifles God’s work.
Much of what God impresses on you will deal with character as well as taking specific actions. For example, God may convict you of an anger problem; this may mean you must inspect your life for sin patterns that feed your anger. Ask God for the specific steps (applications) to take you to the Godly character He desires. I have found that daily journaling of what God has impressed on me is very effective. Allow God to sculpt what He wants to do in you by praying about it, sharing it with others, and continuing to reflect on it. Set up some additional times to review your applications and pray. Allow God to perfect His perfect work in you.
Some of God’s impressions take time while others are accomplished by immediately obeying. Matthew 7:16a emphasizes the importance of your response to the Word: “By their fruit you will recognize them.” (NIV) Knowing Christ and walking with Him are meant to result in transformation, not stagnation. Hebrews 4:12-13 describes the transformative work of the Word: “For the word of God is living and active…it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit…it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (NIV) Ask God how He can make you richer soil for His transformative power. Hear and respond through prayer and obedience. Give God the “feet” (specific things to do) needed to transform your life for His maximum purpose.
Matthew 13:23 “But the one who received the seed that fell on good soil is the man who hears the word and understands it. He produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown." (NIV)
IF YOU WOULD LIKE A FREE WRITE-UP ON “FEET FOR APPLYING GOD’S WORD”, EMAIL ME AT firstname.lastname@example.org, write “FEET,” and I will send you some ideas to help you be more fruitful in Christ.
Do you know someone who needs this message on obedience? If so, sign them up to receive weekly or forward this devotion to them as a blessing for their growth in Christ.
Here are some Bible studies from Growing in Christ to help your transformative experience: “Discipleship” and “Satisfaction.”
Like Us On Facebook
Follow Us On Twitter