I have been reading a Book The Secrets of the Vine by Bruce Wilkinson as part of the journey. There were parts of the book that so speak to where I am now. It is centered around John 15. It provided on some fresh perspective, and then it got a little personal.
I was taken back to Sunday with the children’s church kids. The kids in class were negotiating how much time they had to spend in “Big Service” worship. Twenty minutes, max thirty was what they were requesting. They were all in agreement, I wasn’t. I have a deep desire for the children to truly enter into worship, to experience the freedom found there. I want them to enter in to God’s presence, so their desire will grow.
As they stood there negotiating with me, I asked them how they would feel if they desperately wanted to visit with their friend and their friend bargained for less time with them. Or if their friend put a twenty minute time frame on their time together. Of course most of them did not like that idea. I explained that God wants time with them, and worship is one of the ways we spend time with Him.
Fast forward back to today, the book. Chapter 7 tells a sobering story that I find all to familiar about the balance between works and abiding. John 15. Jesus gives a command “Abide in me.” The book talks about how we go from disciple to pruning – these are God’s actions. Then to abiding which is where have to make our move.
I realized that although I had not been as honest and forthright as the Sunday school kids I have basically been offering God the same time limits. I do things on my time frame and not His. Although I will pray when He awakes me in the wee hours of the morning, I rarely press in during this time. When He awakens me at 5:00 a.m. even though I am wide awake, I still resist the urging to get up and soak in His presence before my day starts.
I am reminded of how sweet my time with Him was back in 2014 when I would spend hours just being with Him. I had such peace. I had such focus. The more time I spent with Him, the more time I wanted. I protected that time with no distractions. How did I get so far off track? It’s truly about making God a priority and pressing past the flesh and convenience to go after the abundance Christ died for me to have.