Lately, there’s been more than one morning the Lord has been gracious enough to wake me up because my alarm didn’t go off. It took a few times before I noticed the battery was dying, but there was another problem. If the clock dropped (I use a travel clock) then the battery would dislodge and either not work at all which would require me to input all the information again, or it would look like it was working but stop in the middle of the night. So I switched out the battery and fixed it so that the battery wouldn’t ever dislodge utilizing a piece of cardboard and some duct tape. My travel clock can’t work without the battery securely in place.
Now, the fully charged battery is working fine and I don’t have to re-input the numbers- time, calendar and alarm. So as I was pondering God’s power in our lives, I was thinking about this clock. See, without the battery or with a dead battery, the clock doesn’t work. It doesn’t display the time or date, and the alarm won’t go off. That makes it ineffectual for its purpose. We try to do the same thing in our lives, try to function as a human or a Christian or both but without the power source securely in place.
Originally, man was made to closely fellowship with God- they walked in the garden together (Gn. 3). But the fall into sin happened and keeps man away from God- unless we draw in close to Him. Often in the Old Testament, God’s Spirit would anoint someone for a purpose or a season but now, since Pentecost, Christians can have the Spirit of God dwell within them.
Do you not know that you are a temple of God, and that the Spirit of God dwells in you? 1Cr. 3:16
Or do you think the Scripture means nothing when it says that the Spirit that God caused to live in us jealously yearns for us? Jm. 4:5 ISV
But if the Spirit of the One who raised up Jesus from the dead dwells in you, the One who raised up Christ from the dead shall also make your mortal bodies alive by His Spirit who dwells in you. Rm. 8:11
The problem is, we can shut the Spirit out, sort of like the battery of our life dislodging. It looks like we’re working but then stop. We wonder why our lives are so tough, why we struggle so much or God doesn’t seem to be here, or working. Perhaps we need to check out our battery compartment- dig inside to see what’s going on. Jesus said:
I am the Vine, you are the branches. He who abides* in Me, and I in him, the same brings forth much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in Me, he is cast out as a branch and is withered. And they gather and cast them into the fire, and they are burned. If you abide in Me, and My Words abide in you, you shall ask what you will, and it shall be done to you. Jh. 15:5-7
See, if we cut ourselves off from or ignore Him or His Spirit then we will not be nourished from His life anymore and we will become withered and can do nothing. That’s when life becomes tough. We can get through many trials and troubles when we abide (*in reference to state or condition: remain, do not depart) in Him. Once withered, we are good only for the fire. But if we abide (continually) in Him, then we will produce fruit as He wishes us to: “love, joy, peace, long-suffering, kindness, goodness, faith, meekness, self-control” (Gl. 5:22,23)
Don’t these fruit sound like things we want in our lives?