This is the my first post of 2017. A new year, a time to reflect on the past and look to the future. I have given a lot of thought and prayer to what should be the focus of this blog for this year. I want the focus to be relevant to being a leader of worship, (in the church, in the home, AND in the world) as well as simply to being a child of God. So I decided to take a closer look at my own heart and life.
On the outside, it might look pretty okay spiritually. I do the right things, say the right things. But you can’t see my heart and my thoughts. I can. And God can. I see a disturbing lack of the fruits of the Spirit. I have been busy in the work of being mom and homemaker and worship leader. I do not currently hold a worship leader position, so I believe this is a good time to re-focus my heart on what God’s vision is for me.
I do the right things, say the right things. But you can’t see my heart and my thoughts. I can. And God can.
I mean, I read the Bible. Maybe not every day, but I did read through the Bible in 90 days in 2016! That must count for something! Well, at least it gave me a renewed vision of God’s plan for mankind. That has formed a lot of my thinking about the kingdom last year. However, what of that did I apply to me….to my heart. Knowledge is good. And so is action.
James 1:22 (NIV) says, “Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” So, if I see myself lacking in the fruits of the Spirit, maybe I should do something about that.
So that will be my focus for 2017 with this blog. It will be primarily for me, but maybe it will help others give focus to this important part of the Christian faith; the evidence of God in your life.
That is why the fruit is important. Galatians 5:16 – 18 says, “So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.” I don’t want to be under the law. I do not want to gratify the desires of the flesh. I want to walk by the Spirit. I want that to be evident. If I am just gratifying my flesh, I am not building His kingdom. It is the desire of my heart to build His kingdom.
If I am just gratifying my flesh, I am not building His kingdom. It is the desire of my heart to build His kingdom.
Building His kingdom requires me to crucify my selfish desires and let the Spirit lead me in opening more of my heart to Him. This coming year, I want to look at each of the fruits, closely examine them in my heart with the mirror of His word, and make changes where changes are needed.
Will you join me? Lord, please open our eyes to see only you. Mold our hearts to be vessels of your love and grace.
This is a song I wrote some time ago. Let’s make this the prayer of our hearts for the coming year.