"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self control..." - Galatians 5:22-23
We have been working on learning about the fruit of the Spirit in our house lately. Some days are better than others just as some 'fruits' are easier to talk about than others. When we talked about love in this post, it came quite naturally. When we talked about joy here, it was easy and fun. The past week and a bit we had been talking and learning about PEACE and it was a bit of a challenge.It was 'one of those weeks'. Not only did my house feel like chaos much of the time, but my mind and my heart felt chaotic too. It was a particularly tough week -- navigating the waters of disobedience and defiance with proper and effective discipline. I wanted peace and quiet! The mom I wanted to be, and the mom I was last week were two different people. Needless to say, I don't think it was any mistake that God had us (all of us) learning peace last week.
I have said it before, but I am humbled and amazed by how Analise 'gets' the idea of these concepts:
Me: "Analise, do you know what peace is?"
A: "Peace comes from loving. Loving makes joy and joy makes peace."
Me: "Um...where did you hear that?"
A: "In my heart. And in my head. Yeah, my head told me that."
Me: "Well, I think you are right. Peace does come when we are loving and when we have joy, and both of those things can bring peace to us. How else can we have peace?"
A: "When we are quiet...and when Jameson is not talking."
Me: "(laughing) Yep. Peace can come when we are quiet, but it is more than just being quiet with our voices."
A: "Yeah, like when everyone is happy and getting along. What else?
Me: "Well, what other ways do you think we can have peace?"
A: :"Um...when...when we say sorry when it's hard to say sorry?" The significance of that statement stopped me in my tracks and I was brought back to it so many times last week. Apologizing when it is hard to do...that can and does bring peace. Peace of mind and peace of heart. Is she really only 3 1/2?
This is what we wrote on the back of our 'peace fruit':So now, when I think of peace, I think of more than just 'peace and quiet'. I think of how God is molding this little girl, and all that she learning, and all that I am learning through her in this process. I think of the character of God and I am thankful that when we take the time to know Him more, we can be more like Him. PATIENCE
When we began to write on the back of our 'peace fruit' one thing she wanted me to write was that peace was 'knowing that everything was going to be good'. Before I wrote it down, I wanted to talk to her about what that really meant first. This is a hard concept to explain to a three year old.
We were able to put it into practice this weekend when she found me crying after a phone call I received. We got news this weekend that someone very close to me, a mother figure in my life, has been diagnosed with very advanced cancer. Ugh. Explaining cancer to a three year old is tough, but the simplicity of her understanding is precious and so amazing. I tried to explain that while certain things in life may not be good, like cancer, God is always good. And knowing that God is always good brings peace. She nodded, crawled into my lap and said, "Mom, let's just sit and be quiet so we can have peace about all of this."