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I am not a gardener, nor do I like getting mud, dirt or seeds under my fingernails. However, I do like seeing the fruit of others’ labor.
I have neighbors who are out in early spring planting flowers, spreading mulch and watering seeds that grow into something beautiful I notice whenever I pass their homes. I don’t know whether or not my neighbors pray for the seeds to grow, but if so, I would certainly say that God answers their prayers.
We plant seeds and expect them to grow and become abundant in their season. In a similar way, God plants spiritual seeds in our lives that are fruit-bearing. Seeds require good ground and must be watered on a regular basis. Spiritual seeds from God can literally change the ground they are planted in—and the ground God plants into is the heart.
As I have received God’s spiritual seed, I must be diligent to water it through constant practice on those around me. The beauty of a flower garden can be seen from a distance, but unfortunately my fruit is not revealed unless I shower it on others.
Galatians 5:22-23 identifies spiritual fruit as love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. There is no limit to how much fruit I can produce. I find that the only thing that limits me is my own inability to see that my fruit is not for me to enjoy, but for me to give away.
The law of kindness is one of the fruits of the spirit. It can be generously shared with others by offering a smile or helping the elderly or doing something without expectation that it will be reciprocated. When I am showing the fruit of kindness, my motivation is not for someone to return the act of kindness; it is because I have freely received and I want to share it. I want people to know that my fruit was not produced from my own seed but stems from my relationship with God. His generosity and love serve as a reminder that He did not have to show me kindness ... but He did.
When I am the recipient of kindness, it sometimes leaves me speechless. I was blessed with an act of kindness by my daughters, husband, son-in-law, nieces and nephews on Mother’s Day. I know that it is expected that children are kind to their mothers, but this was beyond an act of duty. The meal and service they prepared surpassed anything that I could have ever dreamed.
I will always remember that day and I want people to remember me for being kind. My prayer point is that we should all pray for the fruit of kindness. God has planted the seed within us and it is our choice to make it grow. Do so and you will bless others beyond belief. Allow God’s fruit to blossom.
God bless you!
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Rev. Dr. Peola C. Hicks manages all prayer, volunteer and partner programs for OurPrayer. OurPrayer is a Christ centered ministry that receives and prays for over 750,000 requests on an annual basis through the web, phone and Facebook. Peola is an ordained minister and has a profile on Facebook as Peola’s Prayer Points.