"An Inside Perspective"

March 2009

My dear family in Christ,

Ever-precious greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ! Yesterday we were treating some plants in the greenhouse for pests. Some pests are stronger and more resilient than others and some, over a period of time, build up a resistance to the pesticides and become immune. Therefore, horticulturalists and yes, that is the fancy name they give us, must constantly change their mode of attack to stay one step ahead of these greenhouse vermin.

We were dealing with a particular pest called "scale" on our Asian palm trees. This bug attaches itself to the bottom of the leaves and drinks the nutrients out of the plant. The leaves then begin to shrivel and ultimately, if left untreated, will jeopardize the health and life of the entire plant. We call them plant lice. They are very easy to get and very hard to get rid of.

They are also very contagious, going from one plant to another and before you know it, if you are not on the top of your game, you will have a mass infestation throughout the greenhouse. Whenever we find scales on a plant, we immediately seek to isolate that particular plant in an effort to keep it from infecting the others. If the problem is severe we use what is called a systemic method of treatment. It means that the whole plant is treated from the inside out.

Instead of just treating the area where the scales actually are, we make a mixture of pesticide and water, and then water the plant with it. The plant then drinks in the water and the toxic mixture works its way systemically throughout the whole plant. As the scales continue to feed in their natural course of life, they unknowingly drink in the deadly brew, which works through their system and they die. With this type of treatment, you are assured a thorough kill and even the microscopic ones that you can't see with the naked eye are also killed.

It doesn't take much time for the results to become apparent. In a few days the leaves begin to get their color back and resume their proper shape once again. The plant can then continue on its natural course of fruit bearing having had the hindrance removed. It is written, "Then will I sprinkle clean water upon you and you shall be clean: from all your filthiness and from all your idols will I cleanse you. A new heart also will I give you and a new spirit will I put within you: and I will take away the stony heart out of your flesh and I will give you a heart of flesh. And I will put my spirit within you and cause you to walk in my statues and you shall keep my judgments and do them."

When I look around at the Body of Christ, I see a state of complacency. I see a people that have indeed been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb but haven't the slightest idea of who they are called to be in Christ. I see a people that have come out of Egypt by grace through faith but refuse to enter the promised land of victory. I see wilderness dwellers wandering from one sin issue to another, constantly murmuring and complaining without ever reaching the victorious land of Canaan. Is this how the Lord would have us to live as His people?

Has the world crept into the church to such a degree that unfruitful complacency is now the norm? I like to call the above listed text, "the mechanics of salvation." It shows us clearly how the Lord intends to work in our lives systemically, from the inside out. It is written, "Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it are the issues of life." Our deeds are only the outward manifestations of whom we are inside. The heart is the center of the man. It has been said, "If it is not done in the heart, it is indeed, not done at all."

The aforementioned text contains all the promises you need from the Lord for your deliverance. You cannot work your way unto holiness. The Lord must work it through you systemically, from the inside out. You must allow His holy mixture, the Holy Spirit, to work His way in and through you. Sin is an affront to our Holy God. It is contagious in the sense that it affords us a false sense of comfort when we find others who not only do the same, but who also approve of these who practice such. Sin attaches itself to your life and drinks the heavenly nutrients out of your walk causing you to shrivel and become unfruitful.

Are you aware of any spiritual pests that may have attached themselves to you? Are you tired of wandering aimlessly in the wilderness with sin weighing you down? Well, get on top of your Christian game! As you seek the Lord to work, laying hold of these promises by faith, you can return to the Christian's natural course of fruitfulness. All your answers can be found in the above listed text. It doesn't take much time for the results to become apparent. Our God will joyfully deliver you if you isolate the problem, repent and deal with it today! God always works systemically . . .


Joyfully in Jesus,