“Your vine is cut down, it is burned with fire; at Your rebuke Your people perish. Let Your hand rest on the man at Your right hand, the Son of man You have raised up for Yourself. Then we will not turn away from You; revive us, and we will call on Your name” (Psalm 80:16-18).
I spend many hours looking out of our lounge room windows from my recliner. Recently, I noticed a change that had been happening right before my eyes–yet I’d been totally oblivious to it.
Ivy was gradually climbing and winding it’s way up the trunk of one of our gum trees. It must have taken months to grow, ever so slowly. Now it’s at least half way up the tree and looks quite lovely.
Ivy growing on old buildings adds romantic nostalgia to the look of it, yet if left it can begin to pry open cracks and cause damage. It gains strength over time.
Grown in the right places ivy is lovely. However, if it’s grown in the wrong places it can take over and start choking or destroying what it’s climbing on. It’s misplaced! Ever so gradually it takes away the light from living things.
The solid and firm trunk of the tree is like my faith in God. As I spend time in His Word, in prayer, praise, and listening to Him my faith is strengthened with His Light.
I often use up the little energy I have with good things. They can be lovely things full of joy and delight. But, if they gradually take me away from spending time with God each day and from the Light from His Word, it can be misplaced and end up choking me, like the ivy.
I knew I needed to cut back some of those good things, so that I could get back to what was really important–the excellent things.
The ivy needs to be cut back, while I reassess what has grown that I’ve been oblivious to. As I spend more time with God and call on His name, He will revive me.
Prayer: Lord, please show me if there’s anything good in my life that’s choking me and keeping me from the excellent! Give me wisdom and discernment about this. Amen.
About the Author:
Kerryn Wright lives with her family among the gum trees in South Australia. She was a special education teacher prior to chronic illnesses. Her husband is carer for three of their family, who have chronic illnesses and disabilities. God has always guided them through life’s challenges, often in surprising ways.
What “good things” are choking you and keeping you from your time with the Lord, or from “excellent things”? Is there something creeping into your life that needs pruning or cutting down completely?
This is the group Anthem Lights singing “Circles.” It talks about how we go to God with the best of intentions to change. We read His Word and are drawn to what is right. But then we have to go out into the world . . . and how easily it is to go right back to where we were before–struggling with those daily challenges. I know the sin of busy-ness is one that is challenging to me. I have seen my body lose so many abilities because I was forced to slow down in life. They are losses that I have never recouped. And so I struggle with slowing down, because I am afraid I will never be able to speed up again. Kerryn’s words and this song are good reminders that God has even those particulars about our personality and our bodies in