Leaving the Room of Good Intentions.

The stride is always steady when new and fresh ideas hit the pavement. When the gas is on empty, how do we fill the tank when it seems like there is no where to fill up?

That’s where I was a few weeks after my last entry. Weeks went by and giving thanks was a daily struggle. It still happened, but only when the thanks was obvious, new, and fresh. Assignments, school, laundry, Sundays… They all come and go. But I never know when God will meet me amidst another day of sighing to show me more of himself, more of a daily life of thanksgiving.

I remember sitting in the back room of the evangelical church we were attending when I was about 5 (just one of many denominations I was introduced to as a child). Like clockwork, we sang the fruit of the spirit song and watched a bible story played out on a felt board before getting our crackers and fruit punch. Aside from the distinctly odd taste left behind from the cheese crackers and fruit punch, feeling awkward, and dreaming of the shortbread cookies and sherbet floats to come at the night service, I remember sighing and rolling my eyes inwardly every time we sang that song. I even grew to resent that verse in Galatians as the years went on. Although I am sure the good intentions were there, it frequented the lectures of my poor attitude. In reflection, the question I frequently ask myself is, “how often am I living in the room of good intentions?”

Being intentional with the investment of time with my children is difficult. Making phone calls intentionally usually hits the bottom of my to do list, and I can think of many decisions I made with good intent only to realize in hindsight good intentions did not mean good results.

I started out on this journey intending to give thanks daily and watch my life forever change. But the room of good intentions is not the room of heart change. It’s outside somewhere. And I can only help but think that maybe the room of heart change is in the house of grace while the room of good intentions is in a different house all together. A house of my own making. Another house that will crumble, burn, blow up or any other number of odd catastrophic events.

Galatians 5:22-23 came up again today. This time I decided to read it, all past experiences aside. The NCV reads like I’ve heard it all my life. “But the spirit produces the fruit of love, joy peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. There is no law that says these things are wrong.”
Admission #1: I sighed.
Admission #2: the last sentence made me suck that sigh right back in.
I’d read that last sentence so many times before. But this time I switched the verse around.

There is no law against love.
There is no law against joy.
There is no law against peace.
There is no law against patience.
There is no law against kindness.
There is no law against goodness.
There is no law against faithfulness.
There is no law against gentleness.
There is no law against self-control.

A house built with these things may be hard to build, but it will never be destroyed. And there would be abundance of thankfulness. A house with abundance of food and healing for my soul.