Cut Away What’s Dead
When you prune a plant often times you need to cut away the dead leaves or limbs because the stuff that’s dying is pulling needed nutrition from the healthy parts of the plan. “When a forest grows too wild, a purging fire is inevitable and natural.” Ra’s Al Gul The purging fires in nature are needed from time to time to cut away what’s dead and give birth to new and green.
In our lives we know people who come and go, we have people who may only be in our lives for a short while before it’s time to cut them loose. Some people in your life become toxic and it’s tough to let go of those whom you Love, even when the people you love may be bad news. James 1:8 “8 A double minded man is unstable in all his ways.” Sometimes when we know someone the most, or even love, they may actually be, eventually, the person that needs to be cut away. Sometimes cutting away someone we love may feel like cutting off one of our own limbs. This however again, is sometimes what’s most needed in our lives.
In my own life I have held on because of fear and struggles to release those in my life that I with all of my heart loved. Just because you love someone doesn’t mean they are good for you. As I have fought the fight to keep up relations as possible I have come to realize that in my efforts to preserve what I was holding onto, I have infested myself with considerable heartbreak and more pain and more suffering day in and day out. I have become a glutton for punishment as I have continued to try and see the good in people, but as I’ve done this my whole life I have come to realize now I cannot do this to myself any longer.
There are a few ways I believe we can cut things from our lives that do us harm.
- Leaving the door open as an option, but keeping distance and only allowing the door option as a last resort. There must be significant change and we don’t want to write someone off because God can fix anything, but we can’t just open the door blindly. We must look through the small peephole before opening that door to make sure who we are letting inside our home. Keeping your distance must be done. This means no calls, no texts, no emails, no Facebook stalking, no gathering Intel through friends or family. You must truly remove yourself from the equation and allow yourself to be free of the poison that ails you.
- Choose God before bad. Matthew 7:15 “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” When we continue to allow those wolves to infiltrate our lives, dictate terms within our lives, we must ask ourselves what happens when we are in the war with wolves. One thing I hadn’t thought about until now is distraction. When we listen to God we are often placed in the right place when we need to be at the right time. However, if we are focused on the wolves, if we are focused on things that bring us pain and suffering, we cannot hear God, we cannot see the path when our own tears blind us.
- Fight the fight and bring into the fold. We must always remember that grace is not for us to give alone. We must always remember to forgive freely; forgiveness isn’t something to be earned. Love isn’t something that is lost because we don’t stop just because they become an enemy. Luke 10:3 “Go your ways: behold, I send you forth as lambs among wolves.” We know that as we spend time with the wolves we may get bit from time to time. This would be an occupational hazard. This doesn’t stop you from the mission. Everyone has the potential to redemption, and our mission is to continue to spread the Gospel no matter how good, or bad we see someone as. It’s not our place to pass judgment, it’s our job to keep everyone on the same platform and let God pass the judgment.
Everyone deserves the chance and the right to change. Everyone deserves the right to make up for past wrongs. This however doesn’t need to be given freely. Just because someone is deserved the right to change, doesn’t mean that trust has to be given blindly, and doesn’t mean people don’t have to earn the trust we give them. We may have to work for it ourselves sometimes, but nothing worth having in life comes without something in return. Our freedom comes at a price. Jesus died for the sins of all the people of the earth, but we have to burn away our old selves and we have to fight back against the sinful nature. This can sometimes be hard, but as nothing in this world worth while is easy, the challenge is to let go of worldly desires, let go of what weighs us down and blinds us from God’s plan for us.
Release the weights that hold you down. Do not allow yourself to be pulled under the water by the dead weight. Do not allow yourself be choked by the weeds growing up around you. Every now and again purging fire must happen. Never easy for us to let go of things we care about, possibly the hardest thing we may ever do in our lives. Eyes wide open to God, and don’t loose sight of the forest through the trees.