[Part 6, Chapter 38]
It should have been a cinch for me to feed the cattle for Bowser and his boys. After all, I’ve driven tractors since I was 15. However, I’ve never used a front-end-loader. Nor have I navigated a low shed-frontage which then increases in height once inside.
Concentrating so hard on not hitting the gutter, I scraped the sides of the shed. Once inside, I was so intent on not hitting the roof, I forgot about the other end of the shed. I kept telling myself that if I took it slowly, I would eventually learn this. And I did. It just took time and repetition.
Favour is gifted. Favour is received. However, favour is applied as it is learned and then grows within us.
Jesus grew in favour with God and others. We get to do the same.
You don’t become the new person you are by modifying your behaviour. You celebrate who you are in Jesus and live out of that.
I didn’t become a better front-end-loader operator by seeking to impress Bowser or by trying harder. I already had his trust. It was simply a matter of living and learning in the trust already given.
Jesus living in you releases the same abundance of favour, trust, and confidence that the Father had in Jesus.
You are beloved. You belong to him. Now he invites you to become captivated by him. That’s the journey of growing in favour. To practice adoration, you must first know you are adored. To practice favour, you must know you are favoured.
What a waste of energy it would have been if I spent my time on Bowser’s place wondering whether he was pleased with me or if he’d like the way I was doing it. Many people are joyless in their Christian lives because they’re fixated on pleasing God rather than growing in being alive in him.
One day, I was late feeding the cattle and still had another load to feed out. I was feeling a little pleased with myself that I had passed through the learning stage, happy to get the job done quicker, when it happened. Crunch! The shed gutter. It didn’t come off completely. Let’s just say the water has a more direct path to the ground!
It took me a few days, but eventually I came clean. “Ahh Bowser, you may notice a few more broken pieces of guttering on the shed when you see it next.”
“Sticks, why do you think I haven’t got it fixed yet? Don’t you worry about it one bit. We’ve all done it, because we’ve all had to learn.”
Favour is given to be lived. The gifting is instant, the living takes quite some time.
As we grow in favour, we learn to rest in Father’s goodness. We see that he responds to all our circumstances with favour.
The result is?
We grow in favour even more.