The Apostle Paul writes in Galatians that love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control are produced by the Holy Spirit working in the Christian (Gal 5:22-23). Yet, in Colossians, he admonishes the believer to put on kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience (Col 3:12). In other words, we need to work at it!
Thus, these traits are things that are worked into us but which we have to make a conscious effort to build into our lives. This is especially the case for me (Bruce). Kindness, gentleness, and patience do not come naturally to me, especially when I am in the midst of a project that is not going well. And many projects I undertake on my own simply do not go well. For every two steps forward I invariably end up taking at least one step back.
Last week was our “rest week” between SOWER projects. It was also the only extended time we had to get a few repair projects done at our daughter’s home. Although we’ve been doing miscellaneous repairs on our trailer, these are not the same as repairs on a “stick-and-bricks” home. I’ve never hung a rain gutter before or repaired exterior soffits. Now, I can add these to my ever-growing list of maintenance experience.
Perhaps this is how the Holy Spirit works the above characteristics into believers. When things do not go well, that is humbling. In addition, one learns they must have patience and be kind and gentle if they hope to retain family helpers on the project! Volunteer help can easily walk off the job if pushed too hard!
The Christian life is a process and we learn to walk as Jesus walked from our experiences. We will not always do things perfectly, but thankfully He is always there to walk beside us and guide us. Hopefully, next week’s SOWER work will go better, and we will be able to complete the repair projects at our daughter’s home without further complications.