I get a kick out of all those ancestry sites on television lately—people finding out more about their extended family tree. It reminded me of some humor I saw last year:
I sent that “Ancestry” site some information on my family tree. They sent me back a packet of seeds and suggested I just start over!*
There’s a real truth in the midst of that humor!
For many years, I tried to grow something beautiful out of my life with a lot of self-effort. I read oodles of self-help books and listened to self-improvement tapes.
There was a lot of insight in those resources, the problem was, it’s really hard to grow something beautiful from bad seed.
Adam brought sin into the world with his disobedience to the Lord’s command. His sin resulted in condemnation and spiritual death. Because of Adam, all humanity is born in sin. Adam was the “federal head” of the human race, and with his sin, all of humanity was separated from God, deserving only spiritual death.
Like the self-righteous Pharisees (John 8:44), I could make some progress, but even then, it was often with wrong motives. Like the Pharisees, I was inwardly a rebel against the Lord—just like proud, self-focused Satan (Isaiah 14:13-14).
I had to face the fact that I was addicted to sin. I was in bondage to it.
I had to come to the point where I realized an important truth:
I didn’t need self-help. I needed God-help!
I needed the life and power to change that only comes in Jesus Christ.
“For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive” (1 Corinthians 15:22).
“For as by one man’s disobedience many were made sinners, so also by one Man’s obedience many will be made righteous” (Romans 5:19)
My desire for never-ending self-help ended for me on September 7, 1971, when I received the gift of life in Christ.
To be in Christ, means I was “with Him” in his death, burial and resurrection—the payment for my sin. Now I am a “joint heir” with Him, and I am placed into “the body of Christ”. I am forgiven, no longer separated from God, and free from bondage to sin. (Romans 6:3-5; 8:17; Ephesians 3:1-6; Colossians 1:14: Ephesians 2:12-13; John 8:36; Romans 8:2)
Although I still want to grow and change, I know I cannot make choices for eternity without the Lord. I know I am made “the righteousness of God in Him.” I am set apart and made holy for His use and complete in Him. (2 Corinthians 5:21; Colossians 2:9-10)
It’s a totally different perspective. The old seed was destroyed and the Lord planted “new seed” in my heart.
The Lord works in me “both to will and to do of his good pleasure” (Philippians 2:13).
I can cooperate with faith and obedience, but I know it is only God who cultivates His new seed within me.
Are you operating from bad seed? Are you still caught up in self-help? Is it time for some new seed?
* Cybersalt Digest, Issue 4027, 2/12/15, Oneliner #0984
Graphic adapted, used with permission: DIY Seed packet (http://almostmakesperfect.com/2015/05/12/diy-seed-packets-with-free-printable/)