“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 (NIV)
Remember when you were younger, family and friends would ask: “What do you want to be when you grow up?”
My answer would change each school year.
In 3rd grade, I wanted to be a puppeteer. My mom was my hero when she signed me up for the puppet class at the library! 4th grade brought change. Sketch pads were filled with amateur figures doing life together. I as grew, so did my aspirations.
While I enjoyed any attention the “growing up” question gave, I really wish someone had asked me “Who do you want to be when you grow up?” Instead of emphasizing what I did, how powerful it would have been if influencers had asked, “Who do you want to be?”
Today’s verse in Galatians 5:22 -23 would have been the perfect answer to the “who” question. It describes the many characteristics of a woman who displays God’s glory: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. The great thing is, it’s not just an issue of “when I grow up”. He still wants me to become this woman today. So do I and it’s never too late!
Now, I am no longer the one being asked “What do you want to be when you grow up? Instead, I have the opportunity to be the doing the asking. My daughters, ages18 and 15, are just around the corner from living out their own adult lives. “Who do you want to be?” is so much more important that what do you want to be.
I want to be the one to change the question for them.
Do you want to be one who loves the unlovely? A risk taker for Christ? Bold no matter what the cost?
We need to teach our children to care more about their character than their career. When we do, we empower them to do work they can feel positive about because they have developed a character they feel confident about.
Today, I’m asking my children: “Who do you want to be when you grow up?” If they can’t come up with words on their own, I’ll offer some help. The fruit of the Spirit is the perfect place to start.
Won’t you join me?
Dear Lord, help me to care more about my character than my career and to be intentional about who I am rather than what I do. Give me words to pass your wisdom on how to live a life that honors you with others today. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.