Spring Series 1
Challenge verse day 1:
Sow for yourselves righteousness; reap steadfast love; break up your fallow ground, for it is the time to seek the LORD, that he may come and rain righteousness upon you. Hosea 10:12
You may remember the words of the first song from the Broadway musical Godspell. They proclaimed, “Prepare ye the way of the Lord!” echoing the words of John the Baptist in Mark 1:3 (“The voice of one crying in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight.”)
John was quoting from Isaiah the Prophet who said ‘Prepare the way for the Lord, make straight paths for him.’.
Today’s reading, the first one for the Spring Challenge, is designed to encourage you to prepare your heart to filled by God with goodness and understanding over the course of this challenge.
Fallow ground was the term given to ground that had been prepared for use but then left unattended. As a result, the ground became hard and unsuitable for use. Your heart can become like fallow ground, unfruitful and unsuitable for growth in righteousness.
It can become hardened toward others and God when it is not regularly watered with the Living Water of Jesus and his word. If your spiritual life in Christ is not properly attended to, you may notice you are more irritated and less forgiving of friends and family. You are not diligent to read God’s Word regularly or seek out fellowship with God’s people. You don’t regularly speak of Jesus and all that he means to you.
Your heart is getting hard. It is as fallow ground that needs to be softened and broken up. But how? How do you sow righteousness? Through Jesus, our righteousness. The solution lies in the sacrifice of Jesus on the cross for our sins. If you believe in Jesus Christ, who he is and what he did for you on the cross, you have his righteousness.
Acknowledge and submit to the righteousness you have in Christ. Go to God and ask forgiveness of your sins. Commit to walking in a new direction with the help of the Holy Spirit. Humble yourself and admit before God that you need help. Seek the Lord and he will “come and rain righteousness upon you”.
Verses to read on your own:
Copy both verses either on paper or type them into your phone or computer. Read and re-read them at least 3 times. Choose one to memorize:
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
(2 Corinthians 5:21)
This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile, (Romans 3:22)
“If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9)