One of my favorite musicals of all time is Les Miserables. The story, the music, the drama! Sadly, my sweet husband does not feel the same! Back when we were first married, like just over the one year mark, he bought us tickets to see Les Mis in an outdoor theater. I was super pumped. I loved it, of course! His main comment was, "They sang the whole time!" Needless to say, he no longer buys tickets to musicals.
Don't worry! Nothing can squash my love for this musical! I have the soundtrack (duh) and one of my favorite songs to sing along with is "On My Own" by Eponine. In this song Eponine dreams of what it would be like to live life with the man she loves. Unfortunately, it is a song of unrequited love of the worse kind. He loves someone else, so she is just on her own. I know that doesn't sound like a wonderful song, but you have to hear it with the beautiful music!
As believers in Christ, we are never on our own. It is one of the essential promises throughout the entire Bible. God says, "Never will I leave you or abandon you," a lot of times. God promises this to the human characters in all of the Bible stories, and because God's word is living and active, He makes that same promise to us. He says, "I will never leave you nor forsake you" (Joshua 1:5, NIV).
God is always with us because of Jesus' death on the cross. Jesus told His disciples, "It is best for you that I go away, because if I don't, the Advocate won't come. If I do go away, then I will send him to you" (John 16:7). The advocate is another name for the Holy Spirit. It is a description of one of the Spirit's jobs. He advocates for us. Other names from scripture include Comforter, Encourager, and Counselor. Oh, I am so thankful we have the Holy Spirit with us--God with us all the time!
I know this is true, and you know this is true, so why do we not act like it is true sometimes? Let me explain...
If you've read some of my blogs from earlier in the year, you may have learned that I have a word for this year. Something to focus on and grow in with God. My word for this year is Fruitful. It is taken from the verse John 15:5. "Yes, I am the vine; you are the branches. Those who remain in me, and I in them, will produce much fruit. For apart from me you can do nothing."
Yes, this year, I just want to be fruitful for God.
But instead of ramping up my fruit production, God has been teaching me something else. He has pointed out to me in many ways, that I have the wrong word.
My word should really be faithful.
Over and over again, the same phrase keeps coming up. This time, my new Bible study group leader said it. Now, she doesn't know I have a word. She's only met me twice. But she said twice in our meeting last week, "We are just called to be faithful."
You see, what I've been learning this year is that we are asked not to be fruitful, but to be faithful. In the verse from John 15, what is our command? It is to remain in Jesus. The natural bi-product of remaining in Jesus, or of having faith in Jesus, is producing fruit.
I've learned that when I focus on the fruit, I am focusing on my own abilities and my own performance. And even though I'm not "on my own," I'm living like I am. I'm living like my fruitfulness is up to me. I'm focusing only on what I can do. You see, I have the wrong word.
So if you may be like me, are you living like you are on your own? Are you striving for the wrong things? Are you trying to accomplish in your own strength? If so, you too have the wrong word.
Our call is to be faithful. To do the thing He tells us to do. Nothing more. Nothing less.
(**Photo cred: Wikipedia)
Hi, I'm Kristen! Just a girl who loves all things Jesus, family, music and food!
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