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Christian Living

Spiritual Life

Angela's Apple

“Would you like a slice of apple?” Angela asked.

“Sure,” I replied, not knowing she had quietly asked others who sat at the conferee lunch table, the same question.

Angela divided the apple into equal sections — carefully, precisely — until she got to the last two slices. These she made very thin and served them to her husband Victor and herself. Had I known she was going to share the entire apple with so many conferees, I would have declined so she and Victor could have had more. But that was not Angela’s way. She enjoyed serving God’s people. I didn’t know this then, for it was the first day I met her.

How many ate of Angela’s apple? Five? Perhaps six? I think it was more than seven. I do not recall this detail but I do remember well Angela’s gentle act of generosity and the pleasure she had in sharing with us. As I got to know her, I realized she shared whatever the Lord gave her, whether it was an apple or any other possession, and she went about serving people in the gentlest way possible.

Whether it was working the call center phones to pray with individuals, working the altars, or slicing apples at lunch, these acts spoke of her priorities — Jesus must be first, and she must also prioritize serving others above herself.

Angela did not get much of an apple slice the day I met her, but she was satiated to her core with something more valuable. She was filled with God’s presence. Galatians 5:22-23a reads,

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance.” (KJV)

Angela excelled at gentleness and many other spiritual fruits. She had a genuineness about her that everyone who met her knew was real. It came from her relationship with the Lord Jesus. 

My friend’s example taught me how we express Christ’s love in everyday living speaks more powerfully than any noble performance. Some try to hide an act that’s not good; Angela tried to hide her good works so Jesus could be seen through her instead. 1 Timothy 5:25b reads,

“... the good works of some are manifested beforehand.” (KJV)

This typified Angela. Even though she tried to go unnoticed, her humility, gentleness, and generosity caused her to stand out like a sparkling gem.  

Through Angela’s example, I learned that sharing the Lord’s love is not complicated. Rather, it starts by spending time in His presence, and then from this vital connection, it continues through the everyday expressions of ordinary living. Angela had the innate ability to make Jesus’s love real, through simple acts, like slicing apples. 

Friend, let’s spend time with Jesus and then let’s start slicing some apples.  

Father God, help us to daily serve Your people through acts of genuine love.

Copyright © 2019 Diane Virginia, used with permission.

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