With the waves that keep screaming IMPOSSIBLE at me… life’s circumstances… well .. have left me feeling abandoned, alone, and even helpless at times… I keep hearing that still, small voice inside me saying, “you’re never alone. I’m always with you. I will fulfill my promises to you.” Truly, God is faithful, even when we’re not. This season has been one of many lessons. Still praying, applying for work, praying, racing, praying, seeing my doctor, praying, building ministry, praying, weaping… when the world around me keeps telling me to give up, the Spirit of God inside of me tells me never to give in. So, I begain to ask myself what can I learn from all of this, in this mess what characteristics are being built? Then the Lord lead me to Gal 5:22-23 where the fruits of the Spirit are listed. So, today … instead of telling you how to grow in these areas, I’ll share how God has helped ME grow, and you can take from it what you will. At the end of this post I will share a fruit salad recipe w 9 ingredients just like there are 9 fruits of the Spirit 😉 now… let me begin by saying that this process, for me, has been one that has brought joy at times, but has also brought severe pain both emotionally and physically at times. However, by the grace of God, I’ve been able to persevere. In this, I’ve learned to
1.) LOVE… it’s one thing to love those who love you and treat you kindly. However, it’s quite another to love and pray for those who have hurt you. My dad, well, I forgive him for the things he did. While I DO have legal boundaries set, I continually keep him in prayer and hope for the best for his life. No matter what He’s done, God’s grace is made available to all of us including those of abusive nature. I truly believe that God can heal and restore what’s been broken.
2.) JOY… it’s one thing to be joyful when things are going your way, but it’s quite another to maintain joy when your world has crumbled and you watch the people around you seem to be getting blessed with the very things you wanted and prayed for. That new car, phone, ministry, ect… the Lord has taught me in this time that it’s not about the things you have…it’s about the attitude you maintain while waiting for the things you don’t have. Besides… in the end… ya can’t take it with you. So why stress?
3.) PEACE… the old me used to stress about everything I couldn’t fix… now, God has taught me that an absence of peace means there’s an absence of His presence. Instead of stressing, I’ve learned to roll my thoughts on Him. Take a second to praise him and focus on His majesty. Besides, stressing over things and people you can do nothing about is a waist of time energy that can be better spent elsewhere!
4.) PATIENCE.. uuuuggghhhh! Wow! This one has been a doozey for me! You see, I live in an area that is like living on a little island… no real grocery store, no laundromat (we don’t have a washer or dryer at home) let alone very many job opportunities, with a bus system that is a little quirky, making it difficult to get from place to place so… with the loss of car, I’ve learned to be very patient whether it’s waiting for the bus, for a ride from my mom, in the car while she works so I can run errands, do laundry, and train in proper areas to prevent injury, or waiting on my God mom (with her mom) while she handles things she needs to get done (and couldn’t otherwise do)… I’ve learned that time is valuable. Showing patience and waiting on others shows that you value their time. In the mean time… I take those times of waiting as opportunities to enjoy the scenery (birds, trees, ect.) and to read and study the Word. This way, I’m making the most out my time =)
5.) KINDNESS… being kind to others regardless of how they treat you is a biggie! The old me used to get a bad attitude with people and tell them off if they upset me. Now, I’ve learned to maintain a level of kindness regardless of how I’m treated. This seems to shift the atmosphere.
6.) GOODNESS.. well… hmm honestly, doing good to others even when good things haven’t been done to you is something that God has slowly built into my nature. The Word of God DOES say to do those things in quiet, so… I’ll keep them between me and God.
7.) FAITHFULNESS there have been times when I’ve wanted to just walk away, throw p
my hands up and tell God.. I give up! Times when I didn’t want to read the Word, pray, go to church… However, I’ve learned that hanging on to God,.praying, staying in the WORD is THE ONLY way thatiki I have any true, solid foundation and peace. Without Him, my day is flop, my emotions and worries run wild… so, I remain faithful to my God.
8.) GENTLENESS… many people in the world are hurting…. being someone who’s been hurt many times, I’ve learned that gentleness is the key. How do you clean a gaping cut? GENTLY! How do you treat others around you? GENTLY! Instead of snapping at others when they get in my way, I GENTLY ask them to move. Instead of acting harshly when someone snaps at me, I react GENTLY! Sowing good seeds today will bring a harvest of gentleness for tomorrow.
9.) SELF CONTROL… at many points, I have found it difficult to not cry and whimper and fall into a “poor me” mentality. Daily recognizing how blessed I am regardless of what has happened or what things I may or may not need…helps me remain controlled in my thoughts and actions. I’m now more self controlled in the way I spend any income received, I refrain from lashing out at people who’ve hurt and I’ve learned to show respect by controlling my tongue and temper with my mother and others in authority, and refrain from complaining in the midst of my circumstances. Attitude is latitude and an attitude can only truly be changed by the power of God.
Now… I’m still a work in progress, and all I can say is… I pray that through this, my life will bear MUCH fruit & that through this, others will be inspired to allow the Lord to work in their lives as well! No matter what you are facing… keep pressing in and pressing on!
Now, onto the recipe!
Fruit Salad Omega
-1 cup grapes (cut in halves)
-2 braeburn apples (diced)
-1 large orange (diced)
-2/3 cup blueberries
-1/4 cup roasted flaxseed
-1 cup nonfat, plain yogurt
-5tbs clover honey
-1/4-1/2 cup oj
Mix all fruit together in a salad bowl. In a separate bowl, mix yogurt, honey, and oj together. The amount of oj you use should leave the yogurt mixture smooth and silky. If it’s runny, add some yogurt to thicken it. If it’s muddy, add some oj. Once yogurt mixture is thoroughly blended together, add the flaxseed and mix! Then, drizzle over the fruit and slowly mix. Place in fridge for one hour… and serve!