Updated: Oct 13, 2020
Are you tired of the same day to day routine? Do you often feel stressed out by your schedule? What would you like to change about your life? Do you think those changes will bring you lasting joy or peace?
When I was a child, I sometimes wished I could change my life. If only this or this or this (fill in the blank) would happen, I would be happy. I now understand that happiness wasn’t what I was missing. It was joy.
I did not hold a deep joy that penetrated and permeated my soul.
I didn’t become a Christian until I was 22 years old. Some people think that after Jesus enters their life things are automatically different. Actually, that’s when the hard work begins.
I found that out myself.
Nothing will change until we allow ourselves to be transformed.
Just like anything else, we have to put work in to be successful. Jesus is always available, but if we don’t make the time to grow our walk through Him, we experience none of the benefits of our inheritance here on earth.
Galatians 5:22 tells us, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control.”
These are the character traits Jesus promises. He actually produces them in our life after we become followers of Him and allow Him to work in and through us. Isn't that exciting?
Each one of the fruits of the spirit - or behaviors - is embodied by Jesus and we can experience them.
Just as we are able to identify trees in nature by the fruit they produce, we are able to see Jesus at work in other believers by recognizing His fruits in them. As we grow our walk and dependence on Jesus, the fruits become more mature in us, and grow plumper and more visible to others.
As defined in the dictionary, the word trait describes a distinguishing quality or characteristic that typically belongs to a person. The definition also mentions “a genetically determined characteristic.” I find that part fascinating!
When we become believers of Christ, we are adopted into His family and we certainly do inherit His riches. His DNA becomes evident in us. I know how much I need that!
God makes it clear that He allows us to choose what and who we follow. Even after accepting Jesus as our Savior, the trajectory of our growth is a choice we are allowed to make. If we do not choose to walk closely with Jesus, but allow the world and our fleshly desires to rule our thoughts, behaviors, and actions, we will never obtain the riches that could be ours to cherish and to shine to others, so that they will desire and attain the same for themselves through Jesus.
We need Him; we need his traits to survive life. Remember, this world has an enemy in it.
“Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil walks about like a roaring lion, seeking whom he may devour. Resist him, steadfast in the faith, knowing that the same sufferings are experienced by your brotherhood in the world.” 1 Peter 5:8
Never underestimate the destruction the enemy wants to bring to your life, especially when you follow the Lord. Yet, I hold in high esteem the truth that Jesus speaks in John 16:33.
“These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer. I have overcome the world.”
Trouble will happen, but Jesus has already overcome it. He has the final victory. Jesus is the way. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. He tells us so in John 14:6.
Jesus is our cornerstone. Seek Him. Find Him. Follow Him. Claim and believe the truths of God’s word and live the basics of faith as a lifestyle of worship.