“The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against such things.” - Galatians 5:22-23
As the world unfolds in buds and blooms, unveiling greens and other colours we haven’t seen outside over the winter, I am thinking about which flowers I want in my garden. My favourite flower color is blue, even blueish-purple. The previous owner of my home loved yellow flowers. There is not infinite space to plant things, so I have to decide what to remove in order to make space for the flowers I love.
As we grow in our faith, God challenges us to make space for the fruit of the Spirit. In order to do that, we have to first notice the aspects of our thinking, feeling, and acting that are taking up space that we need for the fruit of the Spirit to grow. If we give priority to (for example) impatience or rudeness in our lives, then patience and kindness will have no space to take root, let alone bear fruit.
Removing impatience or rudeness is not as easy as grabbing a trowel and digging it up. It requires learning to recognize those negative things when we do them, and intentionally choosing a fruit of the Spirit instead. That’s repentance: turning away from the negative and turning toward the fruit of the Spirit. The more we do this, the easier it becomes. This is the gardening of the soul. As the season of gardening in the earth begins, let it inspire you to engage in the gardening of the soul as well.
Grace and peace,