Updated: May 4, 2020
The roots of the Fruit have been growing deep over the last few weeks (if you missed our previous posts click here.) We have been looking at the seed of the Fruit planted in our hearts when we come into a relationship with Jesus. Last week we talked about having access to the living water and that with Jesus our well never runs dry. This week as our roots are going deeper and branching out in surrender, we will focus on patience and kindness.
I have been praying for patience while witnessing what is happening in the world around me. I realize I have to surrender who I am and what I do daily. For some people, patience comes easily. That is not the case for me. I have to be aware of what I am letting in, to make sure that my patience can flourish. What you let into your heart and mind will overflow from the core of who you are.
45 A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For the mouth speaks what the heart is full of.
Luke 6:45 NIV
As we look at patience this week, would you reflect on what cuts your patience short and surrender that to God? When we look at patience in the original Greek, it is the word makrothumia, which means to have endurance, perseverance, and the ability to wait without becoming angry, annoyed, or upset. It includes the ability to get hurt or provoked without losing one’s temper. It is a slowness to avenge a wrong. This patience takes a pause; it doesn’t react in anger but in wisdom. This patience is grown in surrender. In the fullness of a relationship with God, we can give Him our temper and ourselves. We have to do as Jesus did and take up our cross. We have to say, “Father, to You, I commit my Spirit.”
20 I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
Galatians 2:20 NIV
Patience, like all other Fruit, has to grow through love, because God is love.
Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs.
1 Corinthians 13:4-5 NIV
When we look at “love is patient,” we have to seek God because He is love and through Him, all Fruit is grown. A patient heart is grown when we know the heart of God and how much He has given for us.
“16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. 17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him.
For some, this is a Fruit that will flourish and for others, like myself, it will take time. So when I say we need to watch what we let in, we need to know what provokes us and ask God, “Is this thing worth it?” The news is usually my trigger, I have had to choose to watch less to keep my joy and peace healthy so that my patience can grow. Do you know what sets you off?
When it comes to my child, God usually says, “Your response isn’t right.” God reminds me that He has never lost His patience with me, He has never screamed in retaliation and He has never talked about me behind my back. He reminds me daily how well He has treated me and that I need to ask Him for that same patience in my life. A question I have come to live by, that I believe Lysa TerKeurst originated, is “Does this honor God?” I ask that question before allowing myself to do anything. This simple question has made my decision making more precise and accurate. When I cannot see past what is happening in my life, I have to ask for a perspective change. I need a heart change. This kind of patience is successful when accompanied by kindness, like 1 Corinthians 13 says, “Love is patient and kind.”
Kindness in the Greek word is chrestotes, this is a true and active consideration for others. This means not wanting to hurt others or to bring them harm, this includes, physically, emotionally, and verbally. Kindness is putting yourself in someone else’s shoes before making a judgment call. If you cannot put yourself in their shoes, pray for empathy. When we ask God for empathy we are asking Him to open us up to others, what they are feeling and what they are going through. When we do this, our patience grows because we have to actively practice with the endurance God has placed in our hearts.
Kindness doesn’t jump to conclusions but questions where someone is at in life with God, and with their mental health. Kindness considers and leaves room for where others are lacking God. When we ask God what is happening with someone else, He can show us. Asking for God to grow our kindness is a huge step. We are asking for a full perspective change. The way we view others and the world will change. I asked God to open my heart to the people around me, to have a kind heart and empathy towards them. This overwhelmed me at first. I started to care for people I would have shut out. Their pain became my pain. When we ask God to open us up, we need to remember we are asking Him to change our hearts and how we process. We are putting others before ourselves.
We no longer survive life and keep ourselves, emotions, and families safe, but we do the same for others. Kindness is a heart reset. It is an attribute of the Fruit that, like the others, brings life not only to ourselves but to others around us. Kindness, when we walk in the spirit, considers each word spoken, and each action taken. We may not be able to do this every time. I know my flesh gets in the way, but we can invite God in to make the change in us. When we have patience, we are able to then show kindness, like a runner jumping one hurdle after the other.
A way the Lord has taught me kindness is through Proverbs 31:12, “She does him good, and not harm, all the days of her life” (ESV). When my husband makes me mad, which happens every so often, I repeat this verse to myself over and over again before I respond. I want to know that I am not reacting in anger, but being patient and kind with my response. Be considerate of the person you are talking to, even if they hurt you.
19 My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires.
When we pursue the growth of the Fruit of the Spirit, we pursue God and a right relationship with him. Would you take the time to ask God where you lack patience and kindness? Start looking for scripture that speaks truth and life over those areas, that you may grow and no longer be hindered. I will share a few verses below to get you started. Choose a “challenge verse” for the week. When you pick a “challenge verse” it will more than likely challenge what the world is saying and what your flesh wants. But in the end, it will encourage you in your walk with God. Challenge yourself to spend time with Him each day, asking Him to grow patience and kindness in you as you go through your week.
When we talk to God and when we go after a relationship with Him, he shows up. God is a gentleman, knocking at the front door waiting to be let in. He will not step into a space He was not invited into, would you invite Him in today? Would you surrender your heart to His Spirit?
Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with that person, and they with me.
Revelation 3:20 NIV
2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.
Ephesians 4:2 NIV
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.
2 Corinthians 5:17 NIV
I will give them a heart to know Me, for I am the Lord; and they will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with their whole heart.
Jeremiah 24:7 NIV
Moreover, I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; and I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.
Ezekiel 36:26 NIV
And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
Romas 12:2 NIV
Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.
9 Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.
Galatian 6:9 NIV
18 A hot-tempered person stirs up conflict, but the one who is patient calms a quarrel.
Proverbs 15:18 NIV
Please join us for the next 3 weeks as we study the Fruit of the Spirit.
Mondays will be when our newest blog post and video come out. Each week of this study I will be giving away a Bible journaling Box reflecting the current week's Fruit. To enter to win head over to our Instagram, click here.
To purchase a Bible Journaling Box, click here. Each box is $15 off right now with free shipping. I would love to send you a custom journaling box and a new Journal.
Wednesday mornings I will be hosting an early morning Zoom session to talk about the current Fruit, give encouragement, and for you to ask any question you may have. This will be at 6:30 am and you will be able to find all the login information in our Facebook group, “Beauty Beyond Eden Bible Study,” click here.
Friday evenings we will have a Facebook live at 7:00 pm where I will be answering questions and connecting. I will also be announcing the winner of our Bible Journaling Box giveaway. Don't miss it, click here.
Thank You for joining me this week, I appreciate your time and I will be praying that God grows Patience and Kindness in your heart this week.
Founder and Director of Beauty Beyond Eden
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