“He makes his own cream cheese”, she marveled. “He even gave us homemade brie!”
“Annnnd?” I asked in anticipation.
“It was delicious!” she replied. “But who has that kind of time?”
It wasn’t the first time that I was hearing about this man. He and his wife lived on a farm. They grew fruits and vegetables while raising various kinds of animals. Every now and then, I would be reminded of the variety of fresh produce emanating from their farm.
As I was beginning to wonder how to include this generous couple into my social circle, the Holy Spirit said to me:
“This is what life should be like”.
In an instant, my thoughts were silenced and I was free to understand what God was trying to teach me.
What seemed like an inconvenience to us was actually the fruit of a man’s lifestyle.
Of course, producing homemade brie required skills, time and effort. But a farmer who had everything at his disposal wouldn’t have to go out of his way to accomplish what would have taken us a tremendous (and quite honestly pointless) amount of effort.
In a nutshell, we produce what our lifestyles permit.
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I began to think about my lifestyle as a Christian and soon realized that there was a discrepancy between the way in which I was living and the fruit that I longed to produce. I longed to share the gospel in words and deeds. I longed to make disciples, to pray for the sick, to feed the hungry, to clothe the poor. I longed to be part of a community of believers who sought God with all their hearts and where discipleship was actually practiced.
Unfortunately, my lifestyle was mostly centered around my job. I worked on weekdays, attended bible study once a week and attended church on Sundays. While I didn’t realize it, this routine made it hard to me to bear the fruits that I was longing to bear because I had to go out of my way to do so.
I had no problem with working longer hours or attending an event as part of my job. It was normal…sometimes even expected. Meanwhile evangelism terrified me, my first instinct when driving past a person in need was to lock my car door, and serving others as Jesus did was mostly confined to church-related activities.
Where was the fruit that my life was supposed to produce?
Back then, I did not realize that I was standing at a crossroads. All I knew was that I was experiencing an unsettling sense of urgency. Not knowing what to do, I began to pray for direction.