It’s easy to focus on what’s wrong or where I believe a person is falling short and completely overlook the areas where they’re growing and making an effort.
To ignore or deny where a person is trying is discouraging and destructive.
I realize how I’ve been guilty of this and I repent.
Very often, we kill the grape vine we’re given because we’re looking for an apple tree (and it might not even be the season for whatever we’re looking for).
I must learn to work patiently with the Holy Spirit within His appointed seasons, to sow what I want (Matthew 7:12, Luke 6:31) and faithfully attend to what I get, to nurture and cultivate what is rather than railing against what isn’t.
God has placed me in a garden. I have been entrusted with many fields. The goal is that there would be life in those fields and to help them be fruitful.
I must remember that the goal is not to get what I want, but to seek what God wants -fruit: to be co-laborers with God in conforming each person, all the fields He’s given me the great privilege of working with Him in, to the glorious image of Christ.
So, a good question to ask in my frustration about what I’m not seeing is, where else are they trying, where else are they budding, what is needful for Christ to be further formed in them?
Then I can turn that budding seed toward the Son, nurture it, and lean into what God is doing -in them and me.
“[Love] bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never fails.” –1 Corinthians 13:7-8