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Do You Understand?

Series: The Gospel of Mark

Death Today, Life Tomorrow

Today’s bulletin article doesn’t really go with the sermon, but it’s something that’s been on my mind this past week. This past week has been the peak of the fall colors for Southeastern Ohio. Pretty soon, things will start to turn brown and leaves will come off the trees. In a month, there will be nothing left except for bare branches. Fall is beautiful, but the reality underlying the beauty is that you and I are watching something die. We get a flash of beauty before the stark reality of winter sets in.

Jesus said in John 12:24, “Unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains alone; but if it dies, it bears much fruit.” Jesus was talking about how we all must die to ourselves to bear fruit. Of course, he was also talking prophetically about his own death.

I wonder if we’re ok with dying? Not dying physically, but figuratively. Change. Transition. We don’t like change; we don’t like the death of things. We prefer things stay the same and often fight to keep them that way. The reality, however, is that often things do need to die—to change—for new life to begin.

What are you fighting God on? What is He trying to do—to change—in you so that new life can come out of death? Are there addictions or patterns of living you need to die to? Are there friendships or relationships that need to be moved on from? Are there parts of your life that God has been trying to get you to deal with for years that you haven’t budged on? What is God trying to get you to change, to die to?

The beauty of fall will give way to winter. Winter is often a hard season—everything seems so dull and lifeless. There is a lull in the world that seems like it could go on forever. However, we know from experience that in a few months, spring happens and things come to life again. Spring cannot happen until winter happens. Life cannot happen until death happens.  What is God trying to help you die to, so that He can bring new life and a new season?

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