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Wednesday, November 4

Pack Up (Eliza Doolittle)

"But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law."  ~Galatians 5:22-23
The holidays can be a time of joy, as well as a time of stress.  Even good changes are still stressful.  When a large family comes from the corners of the earth to get together in one place, even a large mansion can feel very tiny!  Everyone has their own "routine," and their own different needs.  Some are more flexible than others, and some have things going on under the surface that you may not even know about.

Remember, emotions are contagious, and no one wants to catch a bad one.  So this season, as you prepare to travel to family get-togethers, remember to pack the fruits of the spirit......   A little fruit will go a long way toward a memorably-happy holiday!  
  • Love.  When you give, are you giving to receive something in return?  Or is it from your heart?  Love is a deliberate attitude of good will and devotion to others.  Love gives freely, without looking at whether the other person deserves it, and it gives without expecting anything back.
  • Joy.  Is your happiness dependent upon your life going smoothly?  Unlike happiness, joy is completely independent of the good or bad things that happen in the course of the day. 
  • Peace.  Are you frazzled by the small stressors in life?  Peace is not the absence of turmoil, but the presence of tranquility, even while in a place of chaos. 
  • Patience.  Are you easily set off when things go wrong, or others irritate you?  Patience is the ability to endure ill treatment from life, or at the hands of others, without lashing out or paying back.
  • Kindness.  Are you focused on your own needs, or on others'?  When kindness is at work in a person’s life, he or she looks for ways to adapt to meet the needs of others. 
  • Goodness.  Does your life reflect the love of God?  Goodness in you desires to see goodness in others and is not beyond confronting or even rebuking (as Jesus did with the money changers in the temple) for that to happen.
  • Faithfulness.  Do your actions show hypocrisy and indifference?  A faithful person is one with real integrity...someone that talks the talk, and walks the walk.
  • Gentleness.  Do you come across as headstrong and brash?  Meekness is not weakness. Gentleness is not without power, it just chooses to defer to others. It forgives others, corrects with kindness, and lives in tranquility.
  • Self-control.  Do your own desires control your life?  Self-control is literally releasing our grip on these desires, choosing instead to focus on the family's needs as a whole.
These are not things that we don't know.  They're just things that we tend to forget in the midst of the chaos that can surround the holidays.  Don't forget the reason for the season.  It's not about pumpkin pie, turkey, and cranberry sauce.  It's not about scoring the best deal on Christmas presents.  It's not about which team got the touchdown.  It's about love.

Fruit of the Spirit unit for kids :

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