We are not perfect, but we serve a perfect God who is constantly trying to perfect us while we are willing. This year, my family has been praying that we would find different ways that we can bear the fruits of the Spirit. But we have to be aware of what the fruit of the Spirit is and intentional when opportunities come. The fact is, you can pray until you’re blue in the face, but you have to put it into action.
There are plenty of times to be patient when I really don’t want to. There are opportunities for overwhelming kindness to others when I don’t feel like it. But when I do choose to operate by the Spirit’s guidance, I always experience a sense of being complete and content. Contentment comes when we know we are walking where and how God wants us to. Again, we are not perfect but we are thankful for God’s grace. Contentment comes when we are gelling with the Lord and becoming who He is calling us to be.
All of the laws in the Old Testament are summed up in the New Testament by Jesus: Love God and love others. For me, as a dad and a husband, I have gathered that the important thing is for me to be purposefully selfless. There are times when I’m feeling grumpy or tired, but I still know I need to hone in on pursuing selflessness. It’s a common theme in the Bible; it’s a common theme of Jesus’ life. So whenever I’m feeling impatient or tired, I hold onto this word and ask myself what it would look like for me to be selfless in this moment with my wife, my kids, my teammate or whomever I’m with.
Selflessness is a game-changer. But I have realized that it’s in the middle of the lowest of the low times and the highest of the high times that I’m tempted to try to take things into my own hands. As a result, these are the times when I feel the most sad, empty and hopeless. When I try to take control, I feel out of control.
Matthew 6:33 tells us to seek first the Kingdom of God, and then all the rest will be added to us. God’s purposes have to be sought after first, and only then will everything else fall in line. God can meet you anywhere and everywhere. It’s when we consistently seek Him that we see change in our lives. When we fall short and are led astray, God will go after us and drive home the fact that we need Him. He reminds us that our foundation is cemented in Him.
When my wife and I put our kids to bed each night, we pray a specific prayer. You see, Bri and I love our kids and we’re crazy about each other. But no matter how strongly we feel toward each other, I pray that our family is constantly reminded that God loves us even more. In fact, our love for each other pales in comparison to His love for us. And He feels the same way for you, for my teammates, my coaches, my friends and every person I encounter in this life. When we know this and believe this, we are forced to hold a completely different view of those around us.
I pray that God continually brings this picture of His love to our minds so we can love one another more and more. So we can love like Christ.
— Tress Way, Washington punter
Tress Way is a regular contributor to The Increase, providing articles and opinions. Check out Tress’s Increase profile here.
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