“For if these things be in you and abound, they make you that ye shall neither be barren nor unfruitful in the knowledge of our Lord Jesus”
2 Peter 1: 8
Ref: 2 Peter 1:1-9;
At this stage of the recipe, you should stop to see if you have added all ingredients. When you think you have enough for yourself, go back and add more so you can share with a neighbor. That’s what the Amish Friendship Bread recipe is about.
That’s also what Peter says this is about, when he says:”if these things be in you and abound”. If you have carefully followed the recipe he’s given and not been stingy in the adding of them, then you will not be useless or lacking fruit.
After you have opened the door and sat down and supped with the Lord, then stir up the starter you received from him: the faith, grace (which is unmerited favor) and precious promises he has given you; but don’t stop there. If you stop there the starter faith will die. As you have learned through these lessons it must be added to.
Being a Christian that God can use; being able to bring the knowledge of his Word to bear on your life, to make it apply not to just your daily life but to others as well- that is the fruit of a maturing Christian.
When you first become saved, you knew there were actions in your life that were just wrong. You knew it before you opened the door and invited Jesus in – and nothing about that has changed. You still know those things are wrong. Start cleaning them out of your life.
As verse five says: start adding virtue, that’s goodness, fairness, and responsibility. For example you know you have treated someone badly, if possible ask forgiveness or try to make it right. Sometimes it is not always possible-then leave it to God. And I mean that literally, leave it; He can work where you cannot go.
If you have made a habit of always putting your needs and wants in front of others at home, at work or at school; then begin to work on breaking that habit hour by hour until it is gone.
Have you been playing video games or sleeping late when you should have been doing school work or perhaps preparing meals for your family? Take the first step in being responsible for what you know you should have been doing. Hold yourself accountable to you and to God. This next one is a hard one, but a very important one:
Start a new habit of looking for things in your husband, children, friends and brothers in Christ to compliment. Remember, in the description of a godly woman Solomon speaks of her as:
“and in her mouth is the law of kindness” Prov. 31
Those are just a few suggestions. You know your own self better than anyone, start working on your list.
Do you have questions about this friendship with Jesus that you have chosen? That is good. Questions give you opportunity for many long conversations with him as you talk with him through your prayers and open your Bible to read his words to you, adding knowledge of his ways and his will.
Are you beginning to see how the ingredients work together? Not any one “thing” can stand alone to make up the entire new friendship; everything must be added to complete the recipe of a mature Christian.
Start with the things that you know you should or should not be doing. Don’t worry about the future, what God may ask or what may take place; that is His responsibility as your heavenly Father. Live daily to please him. Then you will have grace and peace multiplied. Why? Because obediently living in his will pleases Him.