A Fruitful Life

I was alone, sitting on the bed in the hotel room. With my Bible open to Philippians and my journal nearby, I sat conversing with God.

Suddenly I recalled that six months earlier I had been reading Philippians and was struck by this verse: “If I am to live in the flesh, that means fruitful labor for me” (Philippians 1:22, ESV). Paul wrote this while sitting in prison! God’s voice broke through. I had prayed, God, can I claim this truth as well? 

That morning in the hotel I remembered my prayer from six months earlier. God answered yes, yet with a condition: If I go on living out who God created me to be, it would mean fruitful labor for me. I rested. God’s caveat affirmed my desire—to live out the identity He gave me as His child.

But there’s more.

Not only did God speak to the desire of my heart that morning, but with His caveat, He also highlighted a lie to which I had been vulnerable: I need a role or a title for significance in the Kingdom. No!

Significance rests in my living out my new identity. I don’t need a seminary degree, a spiritual director certificate, or even to be leading a Bible study.

I need to be the me God created me to be.

That morning I added Philippians 1:22 to the page in my journal where I record the scriptures I often pray for myself in my quiet times. I need to be reminded, lest I slide back into the trap of believing fruitfulness is linked to a position or role. God can use me no matter what my circumstances, as long as I live out of His unique design and purposes for me.

As I close, here are a few questions for you to consider.

  • What scriptures speak to you about the truth of your identity?
  • What helps you to remember that truth?
  • What difference has it made in your everyday living?
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