Our theme for this month: “The Gift of Being Yourself”
Our Bible verse for today: “The person who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence indeed is the Lord, is blessed. He will be like a tree planted by water: it sends its roots out toward a stream, it doesn’t fear when heat comes, and its foliage remains green. It will not worry in a year of drought or cease producing fruit.” Jeremiah 17:7-8 (CSB)
Our thought for today: “Be faithful and flourish”
I love the imagery of Jeremiah 17:7-8. There we find the faithful man or woman of God compared to a healthy tree that is well-watered and producing great fruit. Its roots go deep and it is therefore strong and stable, able to withstand storms and adverse circumstances.
Psalm 1:1-3 paints an almost identical picture using similar words. In Galatians 5:22-23 the Apostle Paul describes such a person as living a life that is abundant with the Fruit of the Spirit: “Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.”
The point in all of those passages is that when a person simply settles into a life of faith and focuses on establishing deep spiritual roots, and when they drink long and deep every day of the Living Water, that person flourishes in all the ways that really matter.
This is important, and it’s a key to embracing the gift of simply being yourself. Most of us expend way too much time and effort trying to fit into the world’s mold. We stress and strive to be the kind of person the world tells us we should be, achieving the things the world says are important, and acquiring the possessions the world tells us we should want. This is a mistake and it leads to emptiness and frustration.
Instead God calls us to a life of faith. We are to simply settle into our faith – relax in our faith – and focus on growing deep in a relationship with God. That then will produce a life which is truly fruitful. The more spiritually mature you become the less you will feel pressured to be what the world wants you to be. The most spiritually mature individuals tend to be settled, serene, peaceful, and content. It’s not that they never face problems or that they never get upset or discouraged, but their overall character becomes increasingly serene, peaceful, and content.
Rather than stressing and striving to fit into the world’s mold, you can instead relax and settle into your faith, allowing God to mold you and shape you into the person He wants you to be. That’s when you will truly flourish as a person; it’s when you will be the most content and peaceful.
Just be faithful and you will flourish as a person. We’ll continue this thought tomorrow.