I love fresh flowers in the house. This week’s choice was lilies. I intentionally select flowers that have blooms that have not opened yet. These tend to last longer. Now here’s the thing, I purchased the flowers on Sunday and was annoyed on Monday because all the blooms had not opened. I went on a mini rant because I was sure I had selected some ‘bum’ flowers. But lo and behold, when I went to inspect the flowers this morning, I noticed the blooms were starting to open. I was so happy. Pretty flowers make me smile.
Awhile ago I made a promise to myself that no matter what the day brings, I would find something to smile about. Having fresh flowers in the house helps me keep this promise.
I started looking closely at each of the blooms because now I was intrigued about the various stages of each bloom. Just a few days ago, I was frustrated because the ‘bum’ flowers were not opening as fast I would like. But now, my frustration had turned to excited anticipation. Now, I’m eager to get home because I want to see how each bloom is progressing.
The same frustration I had over my ‘bum’ flowers, is much like my frustration with my personal development of the Fruit of the Spirit. Ok, below is my personal scorecard – according to me.
Galatians 5:22-25 (NIV) 22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24 Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25 Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.
Christlike Fellowship’s motto is Learning to Live like Christ Everyday. What this means to me is if you develop the Fruit of the Spirit in your character, you will live a victorious life. This does not mean troubles and problems will be a thing of the past. Actually, it’s been my experience that trouble and problem got married just to have kids so they could send them over to my house to raise. It’s Ok. I realize that troubles and problems help me develop the Fruit of the Spirit. Once the enemy knows you are actively studying and applying the Word in your life, his sole purpose is to steal, kill and destroy any effort you make. And, he will use whatever or whomever he needs to get the job done.
Back to the chart. As you can see by my chart, I’ve got a lot of work to do. And you know what? I’m ok with this because I’m willing and diligently working to develop the Fruit of HIS Spirit that lives in me. I recognize that I’m a work in progress. My God is patient and merciful. He is a God of many chances. HE knows exactly where I am and HE knows that I sincerely want to be and do better.
So what did I learn from what I perceived to be my ‘bum’ flowers?
As I continue to work towards developing the Fruit of the Spirit, I‘m realizing that each fruit will bloom at its own pace. I’m learning to appreciate the progress of each. So instead of getting frustrated because I’m not further along –by the way, frustration is a trick of the enemy- I will keep pressing in Jesus name and wait with excited anticipation to see how each Fruit of the Spirit develops. The good news is, I have my whole life to keep working at it.
Final Word of Encouragement – Philippians 3:14 I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
Don’t give up, don’t give in – keep pressing!
Be Encouraged! Be Blessed!
This Pastor’s Wife