If there's anything that I love, it's a wonderfully decorated home or apartment. There's just something about a space filled with beautiful things – wall art, unique lamps, beautiful vases.. the list could really go on. A home decorated with various items tells me that someone has put time and effort into it.
So I got to thinking... How useful would all of these decorations be if they were outside of the home? If the wall art and uniques pieces were placed around the outside of the home & the inside was practically bare, would I love the space as much? Would it be as comfortable to be inside? What use would a painting have outside on the ground?
"The best gifts are those we not only cherish but put to use."
Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, & Self-Control – 9 attributes, known as the Fruits of the Spirit, that every Christian should have (Galatians 5: 22-23). How useful would these attributes be if they weren't truly found on the inside of us? It'd be pretty pointless to have them decorated on the outside, constantly spoken about but never actually internalized and acted upon.
"I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus."
-(Paul) Philippians 3:14
On a personal note, I have yet to get all nine attributes to a level in which I feel is acceptable but that doesn't stop me from trying to better them. Here are a few quick ways:
- LOVE - Go out of your way show love to those that irk you the most. Love yourself and take pride in knowing you were created with a purpose. Try to love others in the same manner Christ loves us.
- JOY - Choose Joy by looking beyond current circumstances and facing the Author & Finisher of our faith! Focus your attention on the God you serve and who He is rather than the things he has (or hasn't) done.
- PEACE - Remember when Jesus was on a boat with His disciples and the waves were BOOMING? He wasn't unaware of what was going on. He was calm in His strength. We weren't created to be anxious or fearful (2 Timothy 1:7)
- PATIENCE - aka UNPRESSSSSS! lol. Ever heard of slow and steady wins the race? Waiting on God will never ever have you behind schedule. His timing is the best.
- KINDNESS - This is more than just being nice. This is a genuine attitude of service towards others!
- GOODNESS - What exactly is goodness? I had to research this one! lol. Goodness relates to being morally upright – being virtuous and holy as God would want us to be. Be Holy for He is Holy.
- FAITHFULNESS - Remain dedicated to the work God has given you and the talents he has entrusted you with. Diligently work towards an attitude of unwavering loyalty towards the things of God.
- GENTLENESS - Whew.. where do I begin with the one that I'm working on the most? lol Christ was gentle! Not every situation requires you to "get buck" or "turn up" on someone. Relax bruh. It's gonna be okay. Count to 10 and pray lol.
- SELF-CONTROL - Keeping your flesh in check is what it's all about! Make a conscious decision to allow the Holy Spirit to dictate your moves and actions and not your flesh.
Summer '16 is bound to be a great one! It is my goal to do better in every aspect of my life. I could use a wall painting of gentleness, the art of kindness, and a lot more patience decorated throughout the walls of my heart. How do you plan on redesigning your wall and incorporating the Fruits of the Spirit into your daily life?