“Sometimes we do not know if we are ‘walking by the spirit’ by the fruit of a situation, but we can always know by the fruit of the spirit – love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness and faith.”

art by Eva Timothy

I had a dream that I took all my kids to Walmart and got a pair of size 11 shoes for a child. 

The next day, I passed Walmart and remembered the dream. It was one of those is-it-me-or-is-it-God? moments.

Because if it wasn’t God, I really didn’t want to do it. It was snowing and one kid didn’t have a coat.

But I pulled into the parking lot. I got the size 11 shoes. I bought the shoes with a prayer in my heart and my head was swiveling. I actually asked three people if they needed size 11 shoes. All of them said no.

Then, I hauled all four kids back in the car with shoes in hand.

I don’t know if the thought was from God. 

I sometimes have a hard time with the balance of “every thing that enticeth to do good […] is inspired by God” (Moroni 7:13) and the idea of “good, better, and best” and not running faster than I have strength. I can’t do every good thought that comes to my head.

Ultimately, this story doesn’t have a tidy ending yet. Maybe it will come. 

But maybe it won’t.

Maybe it was just showing up, trying my best,

Working on my relationship with God, trying to get to know his voice in my life,

Counting on him to turn it for my good. 

And that is worth it.

Paul was going on his mission and was told three times he was going the wrong way. Other people may think it was a waste of time, but he learned how to follow the spirit and so he ended up where he needed to be. (Acts 16:6-9)

The key was, he kept moving. God can’t steer a parked car. 

That’s one reason I have loved studying Joseph these last two weeks. He is always surrounded by action words: raised from sleep, thought on these things, took unto him, knew her not, arose, took by night, turned aside, came and dwelt (Matt 1&2).

I want to by like Joseph: continuously listening and moving forward.

Sometimes, we do not know by the fruit of a situation if we are “walking by the spirit” (Gal 5:25), but we can always know by the fruit of the spirit—love, peace, long suffering, temperance (v. 22-23).

The shoes are still sitting in my car. 

When I see them, I see effort. 

And then I start my car with faith that I will be directed as I keep moving.

Quote: Ariel Szuch. 

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