I love fresh, freeing perspectives

Just finished the book "Comforts from the Cross" by Elyse Fitzpatrick and the chapter "Abide in the Vine" brought well... first I went into the normalcy of 'oh yes John 15 abide...I am the vine you are the branches...and you can do nothing apart from me...will be a good reminder for me to abide'. Well like I said, I love fresh, freeing perspectives.

"My life is flowing in you. You are only little branches. Stay here. Abide in me. Let me supply all you need. I will do it all for you." - Fitzpatrick

My achiever wants to remind myself of the disciplines and things to do to "abide" and stay attached to the vine. But that's putting it on me, on my efforts. 

Yes the disciplines are means to grow and remain - study your Bible, spend time in prayer and listening, being still, having edifying community and fellowship alongside you, but that's not where it starts. 

"He's supplying all that's necessary for my growth and fruitfulness...your fruitfulness is assured. It's not your ability to force fruitfulness that is in focus here. It's his ability to transform you into a lush and abundantly fruitful branch, drawing all your life and strength from his bounty alone." - Fitzpatrick

It's not up to me to somehow come up with this life and fruit, but by resting in the finished work of Christ - He gives life that even allows me to be a part of the vine and remain there. 

Takes me to a book by Watchman Nee "Sit Walk Stand" on the book of Ephesians. The positions of Sit Walk Stand are in that order for a reason. We have to first rest, Sit, in the work of Christ and receive, place your life and trust and surrender it over to a new Master and Lord of your life. Then, and only then can you Walk forward in this life and have the source to remain in Him and pursue Him and then you will be able to Stand against the enemy and the deceptions and lies of the master deceiver and the things of this world that over-promise and under-deliver. 

This whole idea of rest and sit in the work of Jesus was and has been the greatest joy and freedom in my walk as I once walked based on my efforts of wanting to do good and appear good and put up the front of what I was known for. And from all my efforts and "doing", what did it get me...chains of bondage and a dead heart. But Christ broke those chains of bondage and freed me from the that heavy yoke and burden, from the law of doing, to just Be. I am in Christ and that is enough. My significance and worth is not by what I do but who I am in. 

I can do nothing on my own. He is my all sufficient sustainer!

I keep a post it note in my wallet with just good question/reminders to "check-in" with my pursuit of Christ:
"How and when do I spend time with the Lord?" - making sure I find the place and time for this to happen daily. Sometimes if we don't decide the "how" and "when" it may be left just as a good intentions to do so and never happen. But resolving to do so and what it looks like makes it easier and more likely to be part of your day.
"Be aware of what things grow and hinder my affections for the Lord". - Be a part of and engage in those things that spur me on towards to Christ and not be involved in things that pull/threaten my affections away from Him.
"Be aware of where my heart and mind is." - again being mindful what things my heart is distracted or battling and hand them over the Christ because He has victory over all. I do not have to exhaust myself trying - He has done it all already!
"How's your fruit?" - The fruit of the spirit should be evident in my life as God's outworking in my life. When I am abiding I will produce these fruits and when I see the specific "fruit" listed in Galatians 5 lacking I know this points to something going on with my roots and I need to evaluate what those roots are sinking into. 

"He is calling us to a life of obedience, but it isn't an obedience that starts with our great efforts. It is an obedience that he has planted and now lovingly tends as we absorb his soul-nourishing life." - Fitzpatrick

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light." Matthew 11:28-30

"Your obedience will grow because He's your True Vine. Rest here. Endure here. Remain here. Tarry here. Abide" - Fitzpatrick

from an old hymn:
" Lay your deadly 'doing' down
Down at Jesus' feet.
Stand in Him, in him alone,
Gloriously complete."