And the Fruit of the Spirit is . . . gentleness

What is the image that comes to your mind when you hear the word, gentleness? Is it the picture of a mother and a newborn child tenderly cuddled in her arms? Maybe it is the gentle soap that has no fragrance and harsh chemicals. Is it a setting on the washer? Does that help to define and explain gentleness as included in the Fruit of the Spirit?

The dictionary defines gentleness as kindly; amiable, a gentle manner, no severe, rough, or violet; mind, moderate.

The Bible dictionary has this definition – Sensitivity of disposition and kindness of behavior, founded on strength and prompted by love.

Founded on strength

When I think of gentleness I don’t necessarily think of strength. When I pause and ponder gentleness has strength. Gentleness is knowing how to use the strength. Knowing God’s strength and seeing the gentleness we so much more that God is gentle with us.

Prompted by love

It is because of love that we are gentle. We love the person and understand that because of that we need to be gentle.

If there is no strength, then it is not gentleness but rather weakness. Love guides our actions and so we then understand that gentleness is needed.

God’s Gentleness

I think we understand God’s gentleness when we understand that he is a consuming fire, a jealous God. (Deuteronomy 4:24) When we understand that characteristic of God, then we can begin to understand his gentleness. If we go back to the definition of gentleness and look at God’s gentleness. We know that God is powerful. God has the strength so his gentleness is founded on strength. God’s gentleness is prompted by his love.

So why is God gentle with us? He loves us. God wants a relationship with us and knows that gentleness is needed.

So if that is true with God would it not be true for us that we need to be gentle with those around us. Ephesians 4:1-3 says that we are to walk with all humility and gentleness. Interesting that humility is listed with gentleness. Humility is how we consider ourselves and how we consider others. If we are humble, it will result in gentleness. Walk in gentleness.

As God’s chosen ones, we are to put on gentleness or meekness. (Colossians 3:12) Clothing is either one of two things. It is either the foundational garments. You know the garments that help to hold us all together. The other kind of clothing is the garments that we wear that people see. Gentleness is both of these — the foundational garment and the outer garment. When we have gentleness as a foundational it impacts how we wear our other clothing.

Reflections on Gentleness

Gentleness is an attitude. The attitude of gentleness impacts how we relate. When we have the attitude it will be easier for the actions to follow.

Gentleness is an action. Our words and our actions should be gentle. Proverbs 15:1 says, “A soft answer turns away wrath, but a harsh words stirs up anger.” That gives us an example of how the gentle action can change a situation.

Let’s grow in gentleness. Learn about God’s gentleness and reflect that in your own life.

This has been a characteristic that I have struggled with writing. Hence the reason that we are halfway through the month and I am just now posting. I do feel it is important. I was tempted to just skip it but knew I really couldn’t. Here are my beginning thoughts. Give me your thoughts about gentleness.

 

 

Special Needs Around Us

How do you respond to those around you with special needs? Do you take the time to engage with them? Are you looking to go in the opposite direction when you see someone with special needs coming?  Do you struggle to know what to do or say? What example are you giving your children about how to love those with special needs?

Special Needs Around Us

All around us there are individuals with special needs. It could be the child in a wheelchair or the adult with autism. How do you relate to those around you with special needs?

Attitude

Your attitude is one of the biggest factors in how you relate to those with special needs. You might not always understand what they are saying but you attitude will set the tone.

Do you view them as a disruption? Your plans have to change because of someone with special needs. You can’t walk as fast because you need to push a wheelchair. Your plans, your agenda might need to change because of someone with special needs. Don’t view them as a disruption, view it as a time to an opportunity for you to serve.

Do you just ignore them? I have watched people just ignore my daughter when she wanted to join in or be a part of what is happening. These are the kinds of people that Jesus interacted. Think about it, when you ignore them you are acting with pride with the attitude that you are better than they are. Don’t ignore them, engage with them.

Do you have a list of excuses as to why you do not get involved? Depending on the special needs the individual might be difficult to understand. Sometimes they are focused on a topic that might not interest you. We have some fun laughs of some of the things that my daughter says. If you put aside your excuses, and get to know her or someone else with special needs, you will meet a person.

Have the attitude of Christ as you relate to those with special needs. As you read through the gospels and see the interactions that Jesus had with the disabled, look at the reactions of the crowds. Numerous times it is records that the crowds were amazed and praised God. So have the attitude of amazement and praise.

Actions

Action follows the attitude. If your attitude is loving and wanting to engage, you actions will follow.

Talk with the individual. My daughter was talking quite a bit the other night with friends about her dreams and plans for the future. Understand and learn about them as a person. Take time to talk with them.

Plan activities that include individuals with special needs. It might mean that you need to adjust how you do things. If you try one time and it doesn’t succeed, try something different, don’t give up.

Your attitude will be reflected in your actions. Have actions that value the individual. Reflect Jesus in your actions. Actions do speak louder than words.

Who are the people around you? How are you interacting and relating to them? Are you reflecting Christ? Take the time to get to know them. Listen, ask questions. See God in a new way and be amazed and praise God.

For other posts on this topic see Biblical Basis for Special Needs,  Be like Jesus, and Special Needs Parents,

Special Needs Around Us

Special Needs Parents

Who are Special Needs parents?  These are parents that have know medical terms even through they have never gone to medical school. These are parents who know how to use just about anything for therapy. Special Needs parents do things longer than other parents. (We had one child in diapers/nappies until that child was about 6.)

Special Needs Parents

Special Needs Parents

  • Push to get the children to do things, try things, achieve,
  • Don’t want their child discriminated
  • Want opportunities for their child
  • Speak for our children
  • Advocate for their needs
  • Love
  • Keep track of appointments, medication, therapies, and numerous other things
  • Celebrate the little things

Numerous things have been written about special needs parents. I want to begin by looking at some of the parents that we see in Jesus interactions with the disabled or those with special needs. Not all of the interactions with the disabled include the parents.

Learn about special needs parents from Jesus’ interactions

Special Needs parents need to know who God is and what He does. Jairus comes to Jesus asking Jesus to heal his daughter. He knew that it was Jesus who can heal. (Luke 8:41) Jairus knows that it is God that can heal. As special needs parents, we need to go to God.

Know that God works in spite of our unbelief. At times we just give up. Jairus and is his wife stood at their daughter’s bedside weeping and mourning because at this time their daughter was dead. Jesus responds that she is not dead but sleeping. Their response was laughter, laughing at Jesus, what does he know, she is dead. It is too late. Jesus works even though they don’t believe. Jesus simply says, “Child, arise.” It was just two words. God works in spite of our lack of faith. (Luke 8:49-56)

Sometimes special needs parents just need to have faith but also be specific. The official whose son was ill came to Jesus and asked him to come and heal is son. Jesus said to him, ” Unless you see signs and wonders you will not believe.” The official replies directly and to the point, “Sir, come down before my child dies.” Jesus responds, “Go; your son will live.” The man knew and believed. He returned home and his son recovered. It was not just the father that was impacted but the household. Our faith can impact others. (John 4:46-54)

Sometimes as special needs parents we need to allow our children to do the talking. Our children have experiences and understanding. We need to listen to them. That was a bit of what the parents of the blind man did in John 9:1-41. Some of it was out of fear for the Jews. They did say, he is old enough, ask him. The former blind man doesn’t have much patience with them. He tells them he was blind but now he can see. Our children can understand God working in there lives in ways we can’t. Give them an opportunity to share that.

Go to Jesus. Sometimes that is all we have left to do and really that is all we need to do. Go to Jesus, talk with him about the challenges. He is ready to hear us.

Reflections

I found this an interesting study. In the past I have looked at Jesus interactions with people, how people response but to look at the parents was new. I found it helpful in my own life as a special needs parent. As I reflect on these interactions, I am reminded that I need to know God, belief in who God is and does.

Are you a special needs parent? What have you learned about God through parenting?

Special Needs Parents

Exercise What your body needs

Everyone wants a healthy body. We want our body functioning as best it can. We want strong muscles. Our bodies need to be able to perform.

Exercise

Let me just say this, “I do not like to exercise.” I told you last week that this is written for me as much as anyone else. That continues with the topic of exercise. There is a long list of things that I would rather do than exercise.

I challenged us to think about sleep here. I reminded us that what we eat is important. Now it is time to look at the last element that helps our body — Exercise.

I was tempted to just skip this topic but I do think it is important.

There are three things that work together for a healthy body. I recently read that our health is maintained by

  • 20 percent in the gym/exercise
  • 40 percent in the kitchen
  • 40 percent in deep restful sleep

So if we want a healthy body, exercise needs to be part of our routine.

Why Should we Exercise?

This goes in hand with the truth about eating. Our bodies are the temple of God. We need to care for that temple. Exercise helps to care for our body and keep our muscles strong.

We want our bodies to be strong. We need our bodies to be healthy and strong so we can serve God and others.

In addition to helping us physically exercise helps us mentally. Our mood is impacted by exercise.

Exercise helps our immune system. It helps with weight lose. Exercise gives us more energy. Exercise helps us sleep better and we know sleep is important.

Why do we skip exercise?

Exercise requires discipline, self-control, and diligence. It requires the discipline to do it. The self-control to say no to other things and yes to exercise. You really need to do it more than just once a month.

I don’t have time. My suggestion is work it into something you already do. Yes, it does take time but instead of driving, walk. That is my plan for getting my daughter from school I walk/run to the school and then we ride the bus home.

Exercise costs money. I am not saying you need a gym membership or even a treadmill in your house. Get out and walk. For that all you need is a good pair of shoes. Do a workout from Youtube. Charity Shops and thrift stores often have workout DVD’s cheap.

I realise that there are people that have a physical challenge that makes exercise difficult. I would challenge you to do see what you are able to do and do that. See if that little bit will make a difference. Do what you can.

So after writing this, I still don’t like to exercise but I know it is good. For me it is a combination of making the time to exercise and knowing  that it is important. Hopefully my goal of walking to get my daughter from school will give me the exercise I need. Ask me in a month if I am exercising.

Do you exercise regularly?

What is your excuse?

August Review

August was a whole month of no rush for school drop off, or quick get to school for pick up, and packed lunches, and no after school activities. It was a month of skipping the alarm clock, enjoying quiet days, working on projects, and enjoying summer. The weather is beginning to feel cool and so I am thinking of all the soups to make. I am ready to find my scarves.

Tomorrow is the first day of school for Miss K though she had three days of orientation last week. Uniforms are labeled, a new backpack ready, and excitement is high. Last week for the first day of orientation she was up and dressed at 6:30 ready to go. I wonder what time she will be up tomorrow?

So what happened in August working toward my 2018 goals.

Let me just say that it is August and I still remember my word for 2018. One of the reason is I write my verse that goes with the word in the margin of my planner most weeks. Writing it and seeing it helps me to remember it keep that focus.

So what happened in August.

I have been spending some time considering special needs in the Bible. Some of the those are written here and here. I have a bit more reading, pondering and writing to do on the subject. In addition to the Bible, I have read Disability and the Gospel and The Bible, Disability and the Church

Currently I am doing an in-depth study of II Corinthians getting ready for autumn small groups. I am being challenged and encouraged. I shared a big about what to do when you are overwhelmed.

In August I read 10 books. Technically I should say I finished reading 10 books in August. One interesting book that I read was Stasiland Stories from Behind the Berlin Wall. In April we drove through that part of Germany and spent a few days in Berlin. I was able to picture bits of the book from our trip. We had also visited the DDR Museum which helped to understand life in the DDR. Reading can you to new places or old places, give you glimpses of life in other places and time.

I finished a project. Let’s not talk about the fact that I still have seven projects to finish. I finished an autumn table runner.

August 2018 Finished Project

I did buy the backing to finish another project. Now to just do it.

At the end of July I was mentioned looking to reduce our use of plastic. I have begun to make yogurt in the Instant Pot. We like our yogurt thick so I strain it. Then I end up with whey. I discovered a great bread recipe that uses the leftover whey.

August bread

What am I looking forward to in September?

School – The routine is good for all of us. Miss K has a great schedule and I am looking forward to seeing how she grows and learns this year. Finishing high school with my son. We, well really, he is almost finished.

Autumn Activities – small groups, dance, and just a bit of briskness in the air. A set time to exercise as I walk to pick up Miss K from school.

Book Discussion – I posted on Facebook that I wanted to read The Gospel Comes with a House Key and did anyone want to read it with me. I am ordering 10 copies of the book for local friends and have a few others friends around the world that are joining us reading and discussing this book. I don’t really know what I am doing but am excited to read this. Have you read it?

How was your August? What are you looking forward to in September?

Caring for our Physical Body

I think this post is written to me. It is an area where I am struggling and need to encouragement and am challenging myself to keep going. Maybe you are feeling the same way. If so, I hope this will be a challenge and encouragement to you.

Caring for our physical body

Last week I wrote about sleep and a bit of how that is caring for our body. I do a good job most of the time getting sleep but this is my challenge. So keeping with the theme of caring for our physical body, this week we will consider the topic of nutrition.

If we are not caring for our physical body, can we really be and do what God has called us to do? We need to care for our physical body.

Are you like me and at times tired on the endless debates about whether a food is good for you or not good for you? There is research on both sides of each debate. It seems that for each article for a specific food or diet there is an article saying why that is not good.

I am not going to tell you what is good nutrition. I think each of us know what is healthy or can do the research. Each of us needs to know our bodies and what is good for our bodies.

Why is it important?

Our bodies are God’s temple. When we have company, we clean our house and keep it clean. Why do we allow our bodies to be run down? Pause and think about the fact that as a Christian our bodies are God’s temple. That should impact how we care for our body.  Let’s care for God’s temple. (I Corinthians 3:16-17)

Whatever we do needs to be done for God’s glory. I Corinthians 10:31 is specific in referencing eating and drinking. In eating and drinking we are to glorify God. That means that what we are eating and drinking should glorify God. If we consider this truth, how would our eating and drinking change?

There is some value to bodily training. (I Timothy 4:8) interesting that Paul uses the word training. Training gives the idea of learning, discipline, and practice. Training tells us that this is not easy but it something we need to keep working on.

How we can for our body shows gratitude. When we value something, we take care of it. When your favourite skirt gets a stain, we get out the stain remover to care for it. Do we really value our bodies? Let’s value our bodies and show God our gratitude.

Two of the passages above are from I Corinthians. Corinth in Paul’s time was a prominent centre of commence. I Corinthians also deals with the question of eating meat offered to idols. I am guessing that food was available and enjoyed there. It is also in I Corinthians that Paul gives instructions that now we refer to as The Lord’s Supper and discusses how they should not defile that with there eating and drinking.

I think our world today is like Corinth in Paul’s time. We live in a world with plenty of food and a wide variety. (I know there are places and individuals that do not have enough.) We splurge and enjoy food. Each of us has what we consider comfort food. We do need food but we need to be glorifying God in our eating.

Questions about caring for our bodies

Does good nutrition guarantee that we will be healthy? We life in a fallen world and have disease and sickness. So no, that does not guarantee health but it is the right thing do so. It honours God.

What is the goal of nutrition? Our goal should be to honour God. Each of us knows what that looks like for us.

What is your excuse? That is my question for you and me. Write them down and see what God says about those excuses.

I told you this is written for me as much as you. This is what I need. I need to write down my excuses and review what God has to say. I need to make some changes in this area. My goal is to lose weight. I have a renewed focus. What about you?

God is Faithful – Six verses reminding us of this

Yesterday was a bank holiday. My husband had planned a walk for international students. My daughter and I met them for lunch. It was great to see so many students enjoying their time together. Walking gives time for conversations.

I want to wrap up the faithfulness focus this month by looking at some verses on God’s faithfulness. These are verses to read when you are discouraged. Reading these will help you know God more. These are great to have posted where you can see them regularly.

Reminders of God’s Faithfulness

I think if you were to ask me right now what is my favourite book in the Bible, I would say, “Exodus.” I love reading it and seeing how God works, God keeps his promise. This passage is when Moses is up on the mountain the second time getting the ten commandments. This is what the Lord proclaims.

“The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness, keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children’s children, to the third and fourth generation.” Exodus 34:6-7

Look at what the Lord says about himself. He says abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness. I love the word abounding is describes big and full so much faithfulness.

“Know therefore that the LORD your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations.” Deuteronomy 7:9

God’s faithfulness is seen in that he keeps covenant. Again faithfulness is paired with steadfast love.

“All the paths of the LORD are steadfast love and faithfulness, for those who keep his covenant and his testimonies.” Psalm 25:10

I find comfort in knowing that the path of the Lord are steadfast love and faithfulness. Again steadfast love and faithfulness are seen together.

“The steadfast love the of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23

Great is your faithfulness. This has a great reminder that God’s mercies never end and they are new. We cannot exhaust God’s mercy. He is faithful.

“God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.” I Corinthians 1:9

Three words but such a deep truth to cling to. God is faithful. So simple but so deep, such a comfort for us.

“No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” I Corinthians 10:13

These are just a few verses reminding us of God’s faithfulness. Copy these and put them someplace where you can be reminded of God’s faithfulness. God is faithful.

The Psalms are fill of so many verses that speak of God’s steadfast love and faithfulness. Read through Psalms and be encouraged.

What verse do you cling to reminding you of this truth?

Be Like Jesus – Interacting with Individual with Special Needs

I am continuing to think about Special Needs. I shared some of the basis for understanding Special Needs here. How did Jesus interact and relate to those with special needs? Jesus gives us a model for how we are to interact.

Learn how to interact with special needs

I decided to begin by looking at Jesus interactions with disabled or special needs in Luke. Knowing that Luke was a doctor made me think that he would have just a bit of that reflected in his writing. I just started at the beginning of Luke reading and focusing on the interactions with the disabled.

Here are some highlights and some of the truths that we can learn from these interactions. I have been challenged as I read these accounts.

Jesus’ Interactions in Luke

Luke 4:31-37 Heals a Man with an Unclean Demon

The demon calls out to Jesus, Jesus of Nazareth. Jesus rebukes him and tells the demon to come out. The man’s life was changed with this encounter with Jesus. The crowd was amazed. Jesus’ interaction changed lives and amazed people.

Luke 5:12-16 Cleanses a Leper

When the man sees Jesus, he knows that Jesus is the one who can heal. He falls down and begs to be clean. Jesus touched him. The leprosy left. Jesus tells him to go to the priest following the law that Moses had given. Jesus touched the man. Did you see that? According to the law the leper was unclean. It is important to know that Jesus touched the man.

Luke 5:17-26 Jesus heals a Paralytic

This is a great interaction that shows how friends need to be involved. The friends brought the man to Jesus but because of the crowd they could not get to Jesus. That does not stop the friends; they are determined. So they let him down through the roof. The friends had faith. Jesus’ response, “Your sins are forgiven.” While Jesus was meeting physical needs, he was more about the spiritual needs.

Luke 6:6-11 Heals the man with a withered hand

It was the Sabbath but Jesus was willing to “break the rules”. The scribes and Pharisees were watching; they will filled with fury. Some might not understand and even be opposed to what we are doing. But if we have the correct biblical basis for understanding this, we will be willing to work to meet spiritual and physical needs.

There are more interactions in Luke but I want to share two interactions that Jesus had in John.

Jesus’ Interactions in John

John 5:1-17 Healing at the Pool on the Sabbath

Jesus goes to the man lying there and asks him, “Do you want to be healed?” Then Jesus says, “Get up, take up your bed, and walk.” Jesus had withdrawn himself from the crowd. Jesus goes and finds him. During this second interaction Jesus says, “Sin no more.”

John 9:1-41 Heals a Man Born Blind

The disciples see the blind man and begin to discuss who sinned — the man or his parents. Jesus’ response corrects them by saying, “That the works of God might be displayed.” What works of God do we see displayed in the individuals with special needs?

Some people came to Jesus asking to be healed. Jesus went to some offering healing. Often we see the spiritual connected with the physical. There was no one way of doing ministry, Jesus healed in many different ways. The same is true today, we need to have a variety of ways.

Individuals who are disabled or have special needs remind us that we are all broken people in need of God’s healing.

Lessons Learned

Because of Jesus’ interactions with the disabled there lives are changed. As we share the gospel with those with special needs, their lives can be changed.

Those around saw what Jesus did, they were amazed, glorified God, and were filled with awe. Our interactions should do the same today.

Jesus reached out and touched the leper. We need to reach out and touch people physically. We need to be willing to get a bit unclean for the Gospel.

Special Needs ministry requires working together with others just as the friends of the paralytic. Support those who are working with special needs as they support those with special needs.

People might not understand what and why we are doing this. We need to understand what God is asking us to do and have courage.

Be like Jesus in your interactions with those with special needs. Do you have individuals with specials needs in your life or church?

Is Sleep Important

is sleep important

Does it really matter how much sleep I get? If I stay up late, I can get all kinds of things done. What are some of the things that you tell yourself about sleep?

Sleep (noun) ” a condition of body and mind which typically recurs for several hours every night, in which the nervous system is inactive, the eyes closed, the postural muscles relaxed, and consciousness practically suspended.” (https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/sleep)

Why We Sleep

A few months ago I read the book, Why We Sleep. I read it based on the recommendation of someone. My disclaimer for the book is that the author believes in evolution and throughout the book talks about how humans have evolved to this point.

Why We Sleep

The book was full of studies of what happens when people do not get enough sleep. There were studies of how after learning something people then sleep and how the sleep helped them to retain what they had learned. One study showed how the lack of sleep impaired reactions for driving at the same level as alcohol.

I thought I would share some of the things from that book. But also some truths from the Bible regarding sleep. Some of this might not be new.

We do need sleep. The goal should be eight hours.

Sleep helps us physically boosting our immune system. It also reduces injury risk for athletes. I found that section fascinating to read about the performance of athletes relating to sleep.

I remember when I was working in Taiwan the work hours were long and sleep was not always important. The author advocates that employees should be rewarded for sleep because as a result of sleep they will be more productive.

“Sleep has proven itself time and again as a memory aid: both before learning to prepare your brain for initially making new memories, and after learning, to cement those memories and prevent forgetting.” (page 109)

If you can’t sleep, get up and do something that will help to relax you.

Get exercise outside in the sun late morning. This helps with the cyclical nature of our days.

Put screens away two hours prior to going to bed. For me that means I need to have a real book to read in the evening instead of reading on my iPad.

Sleep in the Bible

The first mention of sleep in the Bible was when the Lord put Adam to sleep and created woman. (Genesis 2:21)

A deep sleep fell on Abram. While asleep God speaks to him foretelling what will happen to his offspring. (Genesis 15:12) God had already given Abram the promise but reminding him.

It was while Samson was sleeping that Delilah cut his hair. (Judges 16:1-22)

God calls to Samuel while he was lying down. (I Samuel 3). I think that is a time when we are quiet and still.

David spares Saul’s life when he was sleeping. (I Samuel 26)

Being awake at night at times can be part of God’s plan. That happened to the king. He couldn’t sleep so he had the book of memorable deeds read to him. He remembers what Mordecai had done. (Esther 6:1)

Psalm 4:8 “In peace I will both lie down and sleep for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.” (ESV) We can sleep when we feel safe and that comes from the Lord.

We are warned not to sleep if we have done something wrong to your neighbour. (Proverbs 6:1-4)

Ecclesiastes 5:12 sleep is sweet to the labourer. I agree with that. At the end of a busy day of work it is sweet to go to bed and sleep.

Sleep is also used in the Bible to refer to those to death.

There are also numerous passages about dreams in the Bible. God often spoke in dreams.

So a quick summary. God is the one who gives sleep and there are times that he keeps us awake. We were created to need sleep. God does not need sleep (Psalm 121:4) but we need it. Get the sleep that you need.

Are you getting the sleep you need?

Questions about Faithfulness

Live a life of faithfulness

Do you have questions about living a life of faithfulness? Maybe these are some of the questions that you have. If you have other questions, leave them in the comments and we will discuss them.

How do I live a life of faithfulness?

One day at a time. Seeking to love and serve God. Listen to God. Confessing when you fail and know that God forgives. Start your day seeking God, ask Him what he has for you today.

Does faithfulness mean I will be safe?

Depends how you define safe. As a believer we are safe in Christ but that safety might come in eternity. Think about Daniel. He was faithful in praying and remaining faithful landed him in the middle of a lion’s den. But there he was safe as God shut the mouths of the lions. Paul faithfully preached Christ but he was not always safe. In 2 Corinthians 11:23-27 Paul gives a list of things that have happened to him as a result of preaching Christ. We are safe in Christ but that might not mean that we will be physically safe.

Does faithfulness mean I will be successful?

Are you being faithful because God calls us to be faithful or are you being faithful to get some reward? We need to be faithful because God has called us to be faithful. We should not think that faithfulness will guarantee that we will get what we want. Faithfulness might not always looks like success but it can be faithfulness.

About 20 years ago I was leading a Bible study in the Asia. People were busy working long hours. I remember a few times there would only be one or maybe two people at the Bible study. That was a time that I began to realise that I needed to be faithful – faithful to prepare, faithful to be there. God was calling me to be faithful.

Does faithfulness mean I can never quit?

I am assuming that you are asking that you are doing something faithfully and now you want to quit but feel that if you do that you will not be faithful. We need to be faithful to what God is calling us to do. At times God leads us to do something else so yes, we can quit and still be faithful. We are still being faithful to what God has called us. We need to be sure that we are following God and not our doing this means I am faithful mindset.

When is faithfulness difficult?

I think that varies for each of us. There might be some areas of life that are easy for some but for others are difficult. I will say that I struggle when I am looking for results and that doesn’t happen. It is at those times that I need to remind myself that I need to be faithful. It might be difficult when others don’t understand why we are doing what we are doing.

When if faithfulness difficult for you? How do you keep going when it is difficult?

What is God calling you to do today? I pray that you will have the strength to live a faithful life today.

Other posts about faithfulness include Fruit of the Spirit – Faithfulness and The Foundation of Faithfulness.