Thursday, November 1, 2007

Living by the Spirit

22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. 25Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.
Galatians 5:22-25

This passage of scripture has been on my mind the last couple of days. Today, I decided to read it and God used it to convict me. I have not been the most patient mom lately. It's just the little things that seem to add up and before I know it I am becoming irritated with the kids.

Yesterday I was getting everyone ready because we had to make another milk run. I was going to drop the boys off at my grandparents and Lora and I were going grocery shopping. We were already feeling rushed to get out the door, Lora was crying because she needed her nap, Jeb's carseat was giving me fits, Caleb kept trying to close the truck door and before I knew it I was quite irritable.

As soon as I got into the truck (Oh by the way, I had to drive the truck with three carseats, because my van is in the shop) Jeb asked me if I was mad. "Why do you think I'm mad,"
I ask. "Because you did this (blow under his breath)."

O.K. I admit it, I blow under my breath and act irritated if things are not going smoothly. I never really noticed it much until my three year old started pointing it out. Now he always points it out and I always feel like scum when he does.

So, back to the verse. I am supposed to be living by the spirit because Christ lives in me. I need to take the irritating situations as a challenge to exercise my spiritual man because the natural responses that come so easily are wrong! If I am never challenged to become impatient with someone, how will I ever know that I have developed patience? If I am never challenged to react harshly, how will I ever know that I have developed gentleness? If I am never challenged to lose self-control, how will I ever know that I can maintain control? Better yet, how can God refine me if I am never presented with a challenge?

I'm getting on my knees right now and asking God to give me the strength to react with the fruit of the spirit the next time I face a challenging situation.

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