I have realized a couple of things about myself recently. The first, is that I do pretty good with the big picture kind of stuff in life. This is one reason why One Million Arrows resonated so deeply for me. It spoke my language. Second, the issues I struggle with are daily laid down life kind of things. Like serving others and letting go of my flesh driven selfish nature. Can they see His character - the Fruit of His Spirit living in me? And by they, I don't mean the Publix check out girl. I can be loving, joyful, patient and gentle with her for at least 5 minutes. I am talking about the people who know me best, the ones I can't fool...my family.
"It simply is not natural for most of us to love God or love others in the dramatic discipline of a laid down life. We are selfish, self-serving people... Yet God in Christ came among us in lowly service. He came to minister to us, to give Himself to us. And so, because He first loved us, we in turn are to be willing and ready to love Him and others."
(see John 3:16-17 and1 John 3:16-17)
Lessons From A Sheepdog, p 56
I recently read this little book and fell in love with the sweet dog Lass. I saw so much of myself in her. The above quote is one that truly spoke to me. My flesh does not want to lay down my life and serve. I often find myself grumbling that I have do "it" myself. But the truth is that Christ came among us to love and serve. His was a life laid down from the very beginning (Philippians 2:5-11). His Spirit lives within me. And because of that I have the capacity to love, serve, and show His character to others. He isn't asking me to do anything He wasn't willing to do. And He doesn't ask me to do it myself either. All He asks of me is to step aside and allow the Fruit of His Spirit to do it through me.
"Little children, (or in this case their mother), let us not love with word
or with tongue, but in deed and truth."
1 John 3:18