Don’t be in such a hurry
When you get impatient
You only start to worry
That God is patient too
And think of all the times when others
Stop to wait for you.”
Any other Music Machine fans in the house? Let’s hear it for Herbert the Snail as voiced by Frank Hernandez.
Life has been interesting for me these last couple months. Not bad, just stressful and full of waiting. Because of this, I’ve had a chance to live in something I’ve been thinking for a bit now.
Fruit grows naturally when a tree is healthy and functioning as it should. The Fruits of the Spirit grow and become more evident in our lives when our relationship with Christ is healthy and functioning as it should. None of the fruits of the spirit are things that we can just grit our teeth and force into of our life. They are fruit. They grow naturally when the conditions are right.
There will always be scenarios in our lives where patience, joy, or kindness would be useful. Yet, if we’re not abiding in Christ, that’s not what we (or those around us) will see when we hit those rough spots. Inversely, if we are abiding in Christ it doesn’t need to be a conscious decision to be patient or loving in a tough situation; it’s just what will naturally come out of us. This is why it’s called the Fruit of the Spirit. It just kind of grows on you; and out of you; and into others; and then we find ourselves growing on others even during times when our lives are tough.
I’m not saying I’ve responded great each time I’ve had to be patient or kind this summer, but I see growth and I feel peace. It’s a good feeling. It’s especially good because it’s nothing I’ve done. It’s just who God is molding me into; a kinder, gentler, more patient version of me. A me that is abiding in Christ.
“But what happens when we live God’s way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely.” ~ Galatians 5:22-23, The Message