The DEPTH of DEEP!
The DEPTH of DEEP!
My research this week carries me to a sad but undeniable real-life conclusion. The majority of Christians today are sparsely connected to the vine of Jesus and therefore aren’t receiving the spiritual nourishment required to flourish in this world. Like that of a branch on an apple tree that has been broken in a storm, it may remain parsley connected to the tree enough to sustain life, yet no longer bear fruit. The branch has lost that DEEP connection needed to live abundantly as created; it merely continues to survive. Jesus tells us in John 15:5 (NKJV), “I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.” With that being said, it seems God’s application of deep could be quite different than most of ours, as His coincides with depth. Dictionary.com defines DEEP as extending far down from the top or surface: another word used to describe deep is DEPTH. Depth is defined as a dimension taken through an object or body of material, usually downward from an upper surface, horizontally inward from an outer surface, or from top to bottom of something regarded as one of several layers. When these words are used in in a Christian setting, they are usually used to describe reaching for the core of our innermost being.
Unfortunately, people from all walks live with such weak belief systems that their depth doesn’t reach very deep. I found this description of a shallow life on the internet, featured in snippet from the web; “Shallow life is a life in which there is no great thinking. A shallow life does not ask fundamental questions and does not try for answers to those fundamental questions. A shallow life follows tradition without questioning.” Colossians 2:8 (NKJV), Beware lest anyone cheat you through philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the basic principles of the world, and not according to Christ. I am discovering that tradition (especially religious tradition), that most of us are taught in early childhood have been nursed over the years to grow strong in support of shallow thinking. As we expect, no depend on others to do our heavy thinking. This world is being filled with people expecting the pastors to keep them holy, the teachers to keep them educated and the doctors to keep them healthy and so on. Sadly, most Christians attend church once, maybe twice a week out of nothing more than an allegiance to tradition. I have often wondered how someone could attend a church for decades and obviously never have a viable, true relationship with Jesus. The answer is probably “shallow living!”
In pondering why anyone would settle for shallow, I found through my own past an astonishing common core. “One avoids feeling like a total failure applying only a half-hearted try!” Most will never fall in love with Jesus, as Going deep requires effort commitment and discipline! Psalm 42:7 (NKJV), Deep calls unto deep at the noise of Your waterfalls; All Your waves and billows have gone over me. I read this quote from Pastor Don Sturiano, “Through prayer and study, so not to violate scriptural integrity, I discovered that the deep calling unto deep are the deep things of God calling to the deep things of man; (you and I). It is in part, living out the words of Jesus when He said; God is Spirit, and those who worship Him must worship inspirit and truth” (John 4:24).” Now that adds depth to deep! There should no lack in understanding a deep relationship can only penetrate to the depth of which we commit to know a person or place, and this is only accomplished through effort in spending quality time with the subject, uplifting, encouraging and counseling through discipline.
For some the subject of shallow living is a no brainer as they refuse to live life in the shadows of others. They are doers of what they learn, boldly applying what they believe in their everyday lives. Jesus alluded to this in Matthew 7:24-27 (NKJV), 24 “Therefore whoever hears these sayings of Mine, and does them, I will liken him to a wise man who built his house on the rock: 25 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it did not fall, for it was founded on the rock. These employ beyond their wisdom in seeking wise counsel, they realize things outside their own realm of control and seek diligently to gain the knowledge to overcome and prosper through all eternity. Those seeking depth know Proverbs 19:21 (NKJV), There are many plans in a man’s heart, Nevertheless the Lord’s counsel—that will stand. On the other hand, those living in the shallows, have merely chosen a way of life that cushions them from the amount of effort, discipline, and responsibilities of abundant living. They live negatively believing, you can’t, it’s too hard, this is who you are, etc. and as most of us know “we are suckers for easy”. Again Jesus warns of this in Matthew 7:26-27 (NKJV), 26 “But everyone who hears these sayings of Mine, and does not do them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand: 27 and the rain descended, the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house; and it fell. And great was its fall.” Shallow thinking!
Should you really seek a deeper depth to your relationship with God, start living 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 (NKJV), 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. It is factual, one who applies effort, commitment, and discipline in prayer to Jesus will find a new way of life. We see the world in a new light as God adds depth to our deep!
2 Peter 1: 2-8 (NKJV), 2 Grace and peace be multiplied to you in the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord, 3 as His divine power has given to us all things that pertain to life and godliness, through the knowledge of Him who called us by glory and virtue, 4 by which have been given to us exceedingly great and precious promises, that through these you may be partakers of the divine nature, having escaped the corruption that is in the world through lust. 5 But also for this very reason, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue, to virtue knowledge, 6 to knowledge self-control, to self-control perseverance, to perseverance godliness, 7 to godliness brotherly kindness, and to brotherly kindness love. 8 For if these things are yours and abound, you will be neither barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen
HAVE A BLESSED WEEK BY BEING A BLESSING TO OTHERS!
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