“You see and hear that not only in Ephesus, . . .” Acts 19:26
Stop trying so hard to change things in your life. If any Christ follower or any church is to achieve lasting change, it will be by revitalizing our old ways and by the rising of the new life within, which triumphs over all other desires.
There is a tree called the scrub-oak. During spring it’s still covered with the leaves of last year. There are leaves that outlived the winds of autumn and the frost of winter. Every other tree is stripped bare by the harsh cold winds of the fall. But gradually in the spring time the leaves drop off of the scrub-oak, by the rising of new life.
The most potent force was causing them to fall, the sap was beginning to run, the buds were pushing from within. From down beneath the dark earth the roots were taking life and sending it along trunk branches and twigs, until life was expelled and every bit of deadness that remained was gone.
We are plagued by the old leaves of the past. We try to shake them off but they linger on. But as the new life of the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ grows and flows within us, the old leaves quietly drop away.
That was what happened in Ephesus. There was no demonstration of idolatry, but a strong realization of fellowship with God. All the forces of the old were revitalized by the rising of the new.
If you long for the fresh vitalizing power of God, follow God in these steps.
1. Yield to the Holy Spirit promptings.
2. Name and confess any known sin.
3. Ask God for the strength to turn fully and completely to Him.
4. Do whatever He tells you to in His word.
5. Rest your heart in Him.
How’s your spiritual life going? Is it perpetual winter? Have you become desensitized to sin? Are you doing the things you once hated?