Wednesday, March 18, 2015

9-Day Devotional Series-- #AfruitADay

Day #9 Self-Control 

Wow! I can't believe today we are completing our "Fruit a Day" devotional series! And it's been a honor learning about the character of God and how we as his children have access to be just like our father!





Self-Control is the last and final fruit mentioned in Galations 5:22-23. I believe self-control is the basis that hold all of the other fruit together. It takes self-control to love. It takes self-control to have true godly joy. It takes self-control to live in peace with others. It takes self-control to be patient and kind to the unkind and unlovely. It takes self-control to be faithful in this christian walk and to have goodness in our heart. 

This world we live in is out of control so to be self-controlled is taking responsibly of your actions and being set-apart even when our flesh want to do different. 

To be self-controlled we must understand the importance of community and accountability. We are responsible for each other. Let u continue to grow in Christ and as ONE body.

Journal Questions: 

Is my first reaction to something a fruit of the Spirit or a loss of control? Why?

XOXO

Ashley Joy

Day #8 Gentleness 

As we enter passion week leading up to resurrection sunday I can't help but reflect on the character of God. Each fruit reminds me of how blessed I am to be a child of God. 



 It humbles me to know that God loves me so much that he died on the cross for my sins! His gentleness constantly reminds me of his goodness in my life.

The Bible goes out of its way to demonstrate Jesus' gentleness. Also, Jesus affirmed His gentleness: "I am gentle and humble in heart" (Matthew 11:29). Gentleness, also known as "meekness" doesn't mean weak. Sadly, to many people believe so! 

To be gentle is to be strong. To be gentle is to be humbled and thankful. Gentle people are polite and self-controlled. Gentle people would lovingly correct you with a sincere heart. The opposite of gentleness is anger, easily angered and swift tongue. 

This week, let is examine the fruit of gentleness in our lives. Let us be kind towards those in the work place and in our home. Philippians 4:5 "Let your gentleness be evident to all."

Journal Questions;

What is it that makes my heart hardened instead of gentle? 
How can I show sincere gentleness towards others? 

XOXO

Ashley Joy


Day #7 Faithfulness 

My faithfulness towards God has been challenged numerous times on this Christian journey. Our faithfulness is judged by our commitment and what we put our value in! 





I must admit, I haven't always put God first in my life although I constantly professed my love towards him! As humans we have a tendency to be faithful to what we think is important. And in a world full of distractions being faithful to Jesus is one of the most difficult things we can try to do today. We will be faithful to our work, to serving others, or to anything else; just don’t ask us to be faithful to Jesus Christ. 

Today, let us renew our mind towards Christ and put him first. The Bible says "Seek ye first the kingdom of God and his righteousness; and all these things should be added unto you (Matthew 6:33)." 

Journal Questions:

Have I been faithful in my relationship with God?

What does faithfulness mean to me?

XOXO

Ashley Joy


Day #6 Goodness

Goodness is the essence of God's nature. God is good and He extends his goodness to His children. 





Only through a relationship with God can we live a life of goodness and righteousness and not sin! The bible says "Surely Goodness and mercy shall follow you all the days of your life (Psalm 23:6 KJV)." The word follow in Webster dictionary means "  to pursue in an effort to overtake."

So not only is God's goodness following you but it's passionately pursuing you. Through goodness God gives us a way of escape from all sin (1 Corinthians 10:3). That's why we must constantly stay in God's presence because there's a constant war between good and evil. 

Allow God to cultivate in you the good fruit of goodness. And that will lead to the gift of eternal life! 

Let us live the good life! 

Journal Questions: 

What does the word goodness mean to you?

XOXO

Ashley Joy

Day #5 Kindness

Cultivating kindness is something I believe as Christians we truly lack. 





Kindness goes hand and hand with Love. Kindness is the expression of love towards God and other human beings. The Bible says in 1 Corinthians 13 that love is kind. So when we exhibit the kindness of God, we invite others into our faith to experience our God. 

Today, kindness in our society has been equated with weakness. People don't see the benefits of being kind so they don't do so. But we must remember that even when others aren't kind we must still be kind. We must show ourselves to be kind and merciful to those who don't deserve it, and who frequently don’t thank us for it.

The great quote "People won't remember what you said but they will always remember how you made them feel." Be kind! 

Journal Questions: 
Does the kindness I show to others reflect God’s kindness to me? Examples?
Do I seek to gain from the kindness I show, or is it pure kindness? How do I know?

XOXO

Ashley Joy

Day #4 Patience

As I reflect on the word patience I must admit that area hasn't been my strongest attribute. Actually I believe it is the strongest attribute one must posses in this Christian life.





Patience in the  KJV translates as “longsuffering.” A patient person is able to endure much and suffer much without ever complaining. As the Spirit produces patience in us, He is making us more Christlike. 

Patience is a sign of maturity and growth as a Christian. To be patient is to endure. It accepts delay or disappointment graciously. As we go through this week let patience have her perfect work in our lives.

Some of you may be dealing with difficult circumstances. You feel like waiting on God has become unbearable. You're raising children alone, the bills keep coming and your husband is not cooperating. You are weary but patience says "this too shall pass." 

Rest!

Journal Questions:

How would you define Patience? 

What are the things that cause you to be impatience or distrustful?

Xoxo 

Ashley Joy




Day #3 Peace

We are on Day 3 of our fruit a day devotional series. We would resume the series on Monday morning. Have a blessed weekend! 







Today, we discuss Peace. What is peace? And how can one live in Peace? 
Isaiah 26:3 says, "The steadfast of mind You will keep in perfect peace, because he trusts in You." 

God creates the atmosphere of peace through the work of the Holy Spirit in us. We are in constant war when we are not in the right standing with God.

When I reflect over life, I realize my most peaceful moments in life are when I am in connected through fellowship, worship, tithing and fasting with God. To have peace is to live in sweet harmony with God.

Keep in mind that the biblical concept of peace does not focus on the absence of trouble. But James wrote, "Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials" (James 1:2).

Let us live in Peace (Unity) with God. Let us remain calm in the most fearful circumstance. 

Let us have a peace that passes all understanding knowing that our greater reward is in heaven.


Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful. (John 14:27). 

Journal Questions
Do you have peace?
What in your life is prohibiting you from living in peace?
How can you have a peaceful outcome over your circumstance?

Xoxo

Ashley Joy



Day #2 JOY


Oh, Joy!! What can we examine about this character of God. 

Joy, the second fruit of the Spirit listed in Galatians 5:22, is more than just happiness. Joy is an expression of God’s goodness in our lives. 

Also, it's the natural reaction to God’s work in our lives, whether fulfilled or unfulfilled. Jesus said to His disciples, "These things I have spoken to you, that My joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full" (John:15:11).


I don’t know about you but I want to experience this deep and fulfilling Joy that our father speaks about. Today, because we are so burdened by fear, worry and anxiety--joy escapes us and we try to live in the “pursuit of happiness.” 

God didn’t call us to be happy; He called us to live in Joy. Happiness is a fleeting emotion that leaves us empty. We are happy when we have money, and unhappy when we don’t. We are happy when we are on good terms with our husband, and unhappy when we're not. 

I believe that Jesus greater desire is that we have unconditional Joy. A peace and Joy that passes all understanding and a joy that gives you strength to get up and go on even when it feels like you have nothing else inside.

Joy believes the promises of God despite what we see. 

Amen.

Journal questions;
What in my life is burdening me from experiencing the joy of The Lord?

How can I cultivate more Joy in my life?

Xoxo

Ashley Joy


Day #1 LOVE

Can I be honest? There's no way I can produce Love without first understanding God because He is love. And when we traded our sorrow, sin and wickedness for a life in Christ, in that very moment He imparted His spirit (Likeness) into each of us.

When we think about Love, it's easy to love those who love us but I believe the character of God comes in when we love the unlovable. Love those who hurt us. Love our enemies. Love those who assassinated our character. Love those who rejected us and broke promises.

The love which the Holy Spirit manifests in believers is called Agape. This love is not a feeling, but a choice. It is the choice to be kind, to sacrifice, to consider another's needs greater than are own (Philippians 2:3).

The scripture says;

Greater love has no one than this, that one lay down his life for his friends" (John 15:13).

"For this is the message which you have heard from the beginning, that we should love one another" (1 John 3:11).

“Love your enemies, do good to them, and lend to them without expecting to get anything back” (Luke 6:35).

"For this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments; and His commandments are not burdensome" (1 John 5:3).

Today, I want you to examine your life. First reflect on how God love you and see if you have been extending that same love to others. God desire to show his perfect, selfless love to the world and He need his daughters to do so.

Journal Questions:
Have I been loving those around me the way God first loved me?

Who do I have to forgive in order to love with a pure heart?

What emotions do I have after reading this devotional piece?

Please share your thoughts below.

Xoxo

Ashley Joy





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