with Kristy Yates Photography. #ThroughHisLens
“Dear Children, let us not love with words or speech but with actions and in truth” 1 John 3:18 NIV
“Can you get me two more of those please?” I asked with a sharp tone and stern glance. The girl at the drive thru window had just handed me two packs of ketchup when I had clearly asked for four. That is when I heard a small whisper in my mind asking…”is this how I would react?” When the girl returned, I was more careful in my actions and gave her a very gracious smile and thanked her for being so nice.
Just a few months earlier, my world was turned upside down. I was suddenly told that I had some changes to make. Character changes. You know, the kind of changes that would take years to develop into habits.
You see, I’ve always been the kind of person that you had to get to know. A brutally honest, “tell it like it is” kind of person. I’ve always been ok with that, because I know that when people get to know me, they see my heart. They will see my fierce loyalty and my dedication to the ones I love and care about. Once you get to know me, you understand me. But then, the lord whispered to me…”no one should have to get to know you to see me”. I broke down in tears, knowing how true that was. Knowing the changes I needed to make.
I have never been one of those insecure girls, unsure of themselves. I have always been perfectly fine with who I am. I love me, and I think I’m pretty great actually! If I had to describe myself, I would say I was a confident, hardworking, pretty, fun, adventurous, dedicated, loyal, southern Christian girl. I have always been more of a leader than a follower, for sure. I love Jesus, read my bible, and share my faith with others when I see the opportunity. Not perfect by any means…I have more than my fair share of flaws. But overall, I’m pretty awesome.
Imagine my surprise when God pointed out that I am not being who He has created me to be. He needed others to see Him in me by my actions and words, not just hear me talk about it. He needed me to live it. He created me in his image, and I am to show the world who He is through my own actions and words.
I was “…created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.” Ephesians 4:24 NIV
After shedding a few tears, I came to the realization that I could no longer live being perfectly fine with hearing the phrase “you just need to get to know her, then you will see why we are such good friends” coming from the mouths of those that love me. I had a hard dose of reality to face. I needed to work on my character, to become who he created me to be. He called me to be someone that let him shine, someone that let others see him before seeing me.
I Needed to live out Ephesians 4:29 “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”
“be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.” Ephesians 4:32.
He has big things planned for me, as I am certain he does for you. But first, we have to do the little things that let Him shine. Most importantly, learn to love and show other’s the love of Christ. Will I conquer this character change overnight, absolutely not. Nor will I conquer it next week, next month, or next year. It will be a gradual, everyday work. However, one thing I know for sure is that He has begun a work in me, deep in my heart. He will not stop reminding me with gentle whispers each day. He is committed because He loves me. I am confident of his promise “He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.” Philippians 1:6.
He has his work cut out for him that is certain! No matter how much I mess up, how irritated I get, or how many answers I give with sharp tones and stern glances, He will not give up on me. He will keep working on me, getting me ready to carry out His plans. He will work on you too, friend. He loves you.