It's everywhere. It's almost inescapable. On Twitter, at work, on Facebook, at home, on Blogs, and in the news... it's everywhere. That three word phrase as the old year fades and the new one awakens... no, not "Happy New Year" -- that's another post entirely -- but "New Year Resolutions". Thoughts on this have been swirling around like a snowstorm in my heart these past few days, and the storm is slowly beginning to settle, forming each snowflake into words that describe how I am feeling...
I don't want to be the one to decide what to change. If God has taught me anything this year (and He has, beyond measure), it is that I couldn't begin to dream or imagine the depth of what He wants for our lives. The depth of what He can do when we move out of His way and surrender to Him, and trust Him to change US.
"Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us."
-- Ephesians 3:20
I don't want a new year resolution... I don't want a new year, I want to be made new in Him daily... a daily dying to self.
I want what He wants.
He wants me to attach myself to His son, the True Vine, and receive life from Him. He wants my life to become intertwined with the Vine so deeply that the lines are blurred as to where one ends, and one begins. He wants that Vine sustaining my life completely. He wants my life to bear fruit for His kingdom, for His spiritual harvest.
He desires for me to surrender into His hands, to trust Him as the Vinedresser. The Vinedresser knows me intimately, knows which of my branches will not bear fruit, and knows when and how to prune those branches. No one does this with more love and more perfect timing than the One who created the branches, the one whose Son is the Vine. The One the fruits will bring glory to. The One for whom the harvest is for.
Not only does a branch not bear fruit when it stands by itself, unconnected to the vine, the branch can not bear the fruit of faith unless we form a relationship with the Vine and the Vinedresser. If I am not connected to the vine, then my branch, my life, my faith... will not grow. The wood of my branch will become worthless, no amount of pruning, watering, and tender loving care will make it whole again... without Him, I become nothing.
"I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing."
I want and need His guidance, His tough love, His discipline, His pruning... I want to continue to surrender in infinite obedience to the Vinedresser for my life to become fruitful, and in order not to grow astray.
I am leaving the changes completely up to Him. I am at His mercy, and I am excited to see what He will do. I dare Him to surprise me... I have a feeling that He is going to blow.my.socks.off.
If nothing else, what an amazing grape juice my life will make...
Change me, Lord, into the branch that bears sweet fruit for your spiritual harvest.