GROWING IN THE FRUIT OF THE SPIRIT

GROWING IN: GOODNESS

KRISTEN PRAGER

Living in goodness. Do you ever stop and wonder if you’re doing so?

 

It’s something I’ve done my entire existence and I never stopped to think about it. Why? Because life wasn’t always good, and the enemy was very good at keeping me sidetracked from Jesus and focusing on the “not so fuzzy” stuff.

 

There are things we try and push so far back that sometimes we think we’ve forgotten them altogether. Until one day they all come crashing back because of something traumatic happening again, out of nowhere. We find ourselves lost and seeking help to find our way again and to find the goodness we’ve had inside of us all along. 

 

Galatians 5:22-23 says, “ 22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control.”  These are all the things I’d been praying for and didn’t even realize it. Goodness is planted in us from the very beginning. God knew we would be powerless alone, so he put himself inside each of us. We are good, and we have to remember that! 

 

Life has so many ups and downs, whirlwinds of emotions. Life is a let down when parents divorce when you’re a teenager. Life is a let down when siblings who are angry with life take it out on you and everyone around them.  Life is a let down when someone has told you that you’re not good enough.  Life is a let down with bad relationships, abuse and grief carried for far too long. 

 

I can remember the moment I lost my relationship with Jesus.  I felt empty.  I felt no goodness anymore. Everything that I’d been pushing in the back of my mind from over the years all came rushing back.  On the outside my life seemed put together, yet I was faking a smile for everyone around me. 

 

The day after I’d been rejected from seeing a therapist because they didn’t accept my insurance, I walked into church, and my life was forever changed. These past 3 years have been both the hardest years of my life and also the best years of my life. I’ve found Jesus, myself and so much more.

 

Psalms 37:3 says "Trust in the Lord and do good.”  Life is good despite the setbacks.  I still have seasons of depression. And I will continue to have them.  But now I have a defense against the enemy and his sneaky nature of trying to put me back in that place. That dark place that I’d like to not ever return. 

 

Don’t over think living in goodness for the Lord.  Goodness is doing good, because God said so! Be good when you don’t feel like it. Be good to people who don’t deserve it (this is the one I’m working on). Everybody is attracted to good people. Do good. Be good. See good. God is good. Believe that He is the source of our goodness. Live like Jesus. 

 

God’s spirit becomes alive in you when you least expect it. Believe that! Bury the old life and get on with the good life! I'm working on the good life. I’m learning to tap in to the Spirit.  Learning to lean into that voice that I’ve been rejecting so long. So many things are telling us that we are not good. Listen! He tells us we are good! All the time!

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