All of us want a future that is full of abundance and flourishing. We want this for our personal lives, for our spiritual growth, for our relationships, and for our Epic Church community. But as I shared this past Sunday, our future will come down to whether we implement these 4 ingredients:
Sow the right seed. The Bible talks often about the sowing and reaping process. We don’t get to control all of the outcomes in our lives, but we actually do get a say-so when it comes to the seeds we’re putting into the ground of our lives. What kinds of seeds are you sowing in this present season? This will have much to do with what you experience in the future.
Create the optimal environment. For a tree to flourish, it needs to be located in a healthy environment. The same is true for your life. What kind of environment are you consistently placing yourself in? Who are the people you’re surrounding yourself with? What are the spiritual rhythms you’re practicing on a regular basis? What kinds of inputs are you allowing into your life?
Tend to it daily, regardless of the season. Some seasons are easy and some are hard. I think we would all admit that this past year has been incredibly difficult. We’re all tempted to opt out of doing the necessary work in a challenging season. But if you don’t tend to it daily, you won’t receive the potential harvest that could be yours. Some seasons are pruning seasons and some are seasons of drought. Stay faithful in these seasons and you’ll be present when the harvest comes.
Stay patient and do not give up. It’s really hard to stay patient when you don’t know how much longer things will remain this way. But please don’t give up. Breakthrough is coming, but we will only experience it if we refuse to give up.
I love the comparison made in the following text:
Jeremiah 17:5-8 This is what the LORD says: “Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who draws strength from mere flesh and whose heart turns away from the LORD. That person will be like a bush in the wastelands; they will not see prosperity when it comes. They will dwell in the parched places of the desert, in a salt land where no one lives. But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.”
Your future and our collective future is going to come down to which of these ways we live out. I pray we’ll put our trust and confidence in God. I want us to be like that tree planted by the water that has deep roots - in Jesus, in the Epic community, and in the city of San Francisco. We don’t have to fear when heat comes, and there’s been a lot of pressure this past year. We can have no worries in a year of drought. A drought is “an event of prolonged shortages in the water supply”. We have had to experience so many prolonged shortages this past year.
And yet, a drought doesn’t have to keep us from bearing fruit. Jesus told us to abide in Him and we would bear much fruit. Aren’t you glad that we don’t have to have perfect circumstances in order to bear fruit in our lives?
I am praying that we collectively step into God’s glorious future for our lives.