Thursday, August 3 | Let Your Gentleness Be Evident
Read Philippians 4:4–7
Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Perhaps it is too obvious to say, but the fruit of the Spirit is something that should be evident to anyone who spends any amount of time with us. Those who cross our path should wonder what could possibly make us so joy-filled, peaceful, gentle, and kind. They should walk away asking where those qualities came from and wishing they too could experience them. It is often the fruit of the Spirit that invites people into a conversation about Jesus. If we are kind when most people would respond with anger, someone will notice. If we are gentle in tense situations and at peace in moments of chaos, heads will turn. And if we have an abiding joy we carry around as we move through the world, people will want to know why. In short, people will be drawn to us as we demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit, and as they are drawn to us, we have the opportunity to share the good news about Jesus as the one in whom we have life and through whom we can live in joy, peace, gentleness, and kindness.
- What are three words you think people might come up with after spending time with you? Would they say you are gentle and joy-filled? Or do you seem tense and worried? Ask a few people you know to tell you three words that come to mind after they spend time with you.
- Identify someone in your life whose character and presence you admire and want to emulate. If you are able, ask them to help you understand what their practices or rhythms they have in place to cultivate the character you see.
God, thank You for the reminder of Your nearness and of the qualities I can develop as I spend time in Your presence. I want to be different. I want others to find kindness and healing in my presence. I want them to know that my source of life is not found in this world, but rather comes from You and Your love. Help me to abide in You so I can demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit, and give me opportunities to share Your love with others. Amen.
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