As I pondered what to write for today, it seemed like a million “messages” came to mind. Ideas flitted through my head, yet I couldn’t seem to “catch” the one I wanted. I would pull out my laptop or my journal, but the words wouldn’t flow. The cursor blinked back… taunting me. The pencil hovered over paper but couldn’t quite seem to land… The verses wouldn’t pop out from the page. With all of these ideas, I couldn’t understand why the message itself wasn’t “developing” like normal. Usually, I receive an idea from God followed almost immediately with points, anecdotes, and Scriptures. This time… the message wasn’t developing.
Some call it writer’s block. I call it the Lord’s timing. He knows who needs this Word, specifically, and when they need it, specifically. There are no coincidences or accidents. So, if you’re reading this, welcome.
You have a divine appointment with the King today, and He has a Word for you.
The message came together for me just a few days ago. I received a beautiful bouquet of flowers from a friend on Valentine’s Day, and being super sentimental, I decided that I was going to try my hand at a Do-It-Yourself (DIY), “pinterest-y” type project. I wanted to dry the flowers, place them in a clear ornament, and use a cricut machine to put curly-q words on the outside of the ornament commemorating the occasion. So, I did what all millennials do… I googled… how to dry flowers, how to put them inside the ornament intact, how to use my cricut machine that (prior to all this) was collecting dust in my closet.
According to Google, the first step is to peel off the petals of the flowers that you want to dry. The second step is to place these petals on a paper towel (or something like it), and then you let them sit until they dry. It’s as simple as that… for that portion at least… the actual drying of the flowers. It was as I was peeling the petals off of the flowers that God spoke.
You see, in the beginning of this process, I was peeling shriveled rose petals that lacked that vibrant pink color that they originally had the day that I received them… But the more petals that I peeled… the more that the striking pink hue they once had began to appear. Pinker and pinker and pinker.
I thought of Adam and Eve in the garden of Eden. When they were first created, they were perfect. Absolutely perfect… just like that bouquet of pink, yellow, and purple flowers that were delivered to my door. Genesis 1:27 says,
“So God created mankind in His own image, in the image of God He created them: male and female He created them.”
They were perfect, just like the Father, Son, and Spirit because they were created in Their image.
But something happened to make them imperfect. Adam and Eve decided to disobey God’s Word, and sin entered the world as a result of their actions. (You can read the full account in Genesis 3). Like my flower petals, they were sentenced to inevitable death. Romans 5:12 says,
“Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all people, because all sinned…”
The only beautiful part of all of this is that God created a way for mankind to be redeemed—Jesus’s death on the cross. Just like the pink hue that began to appear more and more vibrantly as I peeled away the layers, Jesus’s birth, life, death, and resurrection was on the horizon… giving more life and more hope to a lost and dying world with each passing day.
If you have recognized your need for a Savior (because you do wrong things), if you have confessed that need (told God), and then if you asked Him to be Lord of your life and asked for forgiveness of sins, I rejoice with you! I rejoice in your salvation because “being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Philippians 1:6). What that means is that Jesus will treat you just like my flower petals.
Those shriveled, “ugly” parts can be likened to the sin in our lives. Whenever we first become Christians, there are many of these parts, but as we journey with Christ, He lovingly exposes the sin in our lives and shows us how to get rid of it. John 15:2 says,
“He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit He prunes so that it will be even more fruitful”
He doesn’t want us to be shriveled, lacking our luster. He wants us to be vibrant and beautiful… new creations. But the only way that He can do that is to help us get rid of sin in our lives so that we will be more like Him. Deuteronomy 30:6 says,
“The Lord your God will circumcise your hearts and the hearts of your descendants, so that you may love Him with all your heart and with all your soul, and live”
And just like my dried flower petals commemorate such a special gesture from a friend, let’s let the Lord’s pruning and circumcision of our hearts and lives be monuments to His faithfulness. He could have decided to leave us to our consequence of death as a result of our sin. Instead, He lovingly created a way for us to be reconciled by sending His Son to die in our place.
“Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for His compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness” (Lamentations 3:22-23).
Let today be the day that you begin to shine, that you become the vibrant new creation that God intends for you to be.
Allow Him to prune and circumcise the sin in your life.
Document His faithfulness to you.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here!
2 Corinthians 5:17