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Imagine the Possibilities

Years ago there was a show called, Arrested Development (I know there was a revival in the recent past on Netflix but I haven’t seen it). It’s a comedy following the dysfunctions of a wealthy family in trouble, the Bluths.

In one storyline, dad (who’s in prison) is visiting with his son about the family’s financial struggles when his dad offers, “there’s always money in the banana stand.” The banana stand was where the family got their start in business selling chocolate covered bananas and created a financial empire.

The son tries to figure out what he’s trying to say. He doubles down on working at the banana stand, but it’s definitely not enough to get them out of their deficits. He ponders. He struggles. Finally he decides his dad must mean that he should burn down the banana stand for the insurance money thinking it’s worth more gone than there.

When the plan is complete, they come back to dad who informs them that he keeps a large stash of cash in the banana stand and they just burned it all up.

I feel like this with God sometimes.

Instead of listening or asking questions of the Father, I hear a small directive and set out to “figure it all out.” I want to do what He says, but I imagine all the possibilities of what He could mean instead of waiting to hear what He does mean.

Dr. Amit Sood, a professor of medicine at the Mayo Clinic, tells us that within our brains, the imaginary is real, lighting up the same nerve bundles whether the event is actually happening, or just imagined. We use our imaginations every day. –Christa Black Gifford, Heart Made Whole

When your imagination wanders, your faith follows. If you imagine fearful situations, you tend that direction. However, if you imagine good resolutions, He’ll lead you there.

It’s not about positive thinking. It’s using the gift of what God’s given you as you’re yielded to the Holy Spirit. Your brain lights up the same when you’re imagining as when you’re living it–that’s a powerful thing to understand!

I’ve had plenty of experiences where I received something from God and ran off to work it out on my own. It never materializes properly. You have the capacity and responsibility to imagine and dream in God, and you have a choice.

You can dwell on the negative “what if’s” or you can plunge headlong into promises and hope fueled by eternal light. I know I’ve chosen poorly so many times, burning down what was much more valuable than I realized. Still, He’s helping me. It’s a process.

Fear doesn’t get to rule where sanctified imagination is active. Why? Because His love is there, driving it out.

How about you? What are your thoughts on this? Do you feel like you have a good imagination?

hmwWelcome to week 8 of our book club discussion of Heart Made Whole by Christa Black GiffordWe are taking a sentence, paragraph, or passage that inspires, encourages, or challenges and writing about it. If you have a response on your blog, add your link to the widget below and don’t forget to check out my friend and co-facilitator, Sarah Salter’s post. Whether you’ve read the chapter or not, feel free to dive into the conversation!

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  1. Great story about the banana stand. I wonder how many times we burn down our own banana stands. And over and over again.

    • Yep. I’ve got a hand up over here. I was so sure that’s what I was supposed to do! Thanks Glynn.

  2. That banana stand story had no “appeal” ! Sorry couldn’t resist my brother! I guess my imagination is going wild!

    Seriously though, that’s is why we need to take every thought captive and allow the Holy Spirit to train the way we think!

    Bless ya Jason!
    Jay Cookingham recently posted..All is NOT LostMy Profile

    • Puns are welcome here anytime! And YES! We have to allow Him to train our brains. Thanks Jay.

  3. “Fear doesn’t get to rule where sanctified imagination is active.” Soooo much wisdom in this post. There’s a difference between celebrating the amazing power of the mind and recognizing the Power behind it.

    So well said, Jason. Earth full of wisdom in this post, brother.

    • I appreciate that, Floyd! Blessings to you my friend.

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