Here are five biblical habits that will help you cultivate an abundant and fruitful life.
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Happy Saturday, Lois!

Today I invited Candyce Carden to share some helpful ways to reap a life of abundance. I know my fellow gardeners will enjoy this one!
-Sarah Koontz

I like flowers growing in my yard, but I’m an average gardener at best. However, when I decided to put my condo up for sale, I became more than a dabbler in flowers.

I developed an expertise that improved my home’s curb appeal.

Because I invested time, money, and love in my flowers, I reaped an abundance of beautifully blooming Zinnias, Begonias, and Petunias.

The more my flowers thrived, the more effort I put into sustaining them.

This abundance of beautiful blooms reminded me about the life of abundance Jesus promises believers.

In John 10:10 ESV, Jesus contrasts what He offers with what Satan offers:
The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly.

The promise is there. Why, then, is abundant life often elusive for even those of us who walk in faith?

As long as we are on this earth, our life will be a constant battle between what the world offers and what God offers.

When God made us, He filled us with needs this world can’t provide.

But we make the mistake of chasing after worldly things to satisfy our fundamental need, which is God Himself. Thus, we cheat ourselves out of the life of abundance Jesus promised.

For only the Holy Spirit can fulfill us.

Like my glorious flowers, harvesting abundant life takes effort on our part. We have to invest in planting and sustaining the right seeds.

The abundant life Jesus came to give isn’t automatic. We must wake the Spirit in us each day.

And the more intentional we are, the more bountiful our harvest will be.

In today's SOULfood, I am going to share five biblical habits that will help you cultivate an abundant and fruitful life.

Habit #1 - Feed Your Faith with God’s Word

I regularly feed Miracle-Gro to my flowers to encourage growth. To grow our faith, we feed it daily with Scripture. Inspired by God, the Bible is a manual for Christian living. It also reveals God’s amazing grace and love for us.

Getting to know God through Bible study builds our trust in Him.
Trust in God leads to peace because we have assurance that He is with us in all circumstances, good and bad. Where God is, peace is.

Habit #2 - Sprinkle Every Day with Prayer

The sprinkler system in my yard is set to come on twice weekly. This isn't enough water to sustain the flowers during the hot and dry months of summer. And the water from the sprinkler doesn't reach all my flowers. So I have to be intentional in seeing that my plants got enough water to thrive.  

Just as plants need water flowing to their roots, we need a steady flow of prayer throughout our day to sustain abundant living.

Prayer is the path to a personal relationship with Jesus.
It’s an ongoing conversation. It’s opening our hearts to hear what He has to say. It’s telling Him about our fears and worries, requesting guidance, and expressing thanks.

Habit #3 - Pay Attention to God's Work

To harvest the abundant life Jesus desires for us, we must practice living in the present. Only then will we notice the holy in the ordinary. We draw closer to God as we "seek his face always (1 Ch.16:11 NIV)."

And the more we notice the holy, the easier it becomes to find in the everyday moments. It's much easier to thrive when we strive to recognize God’s goodness all around us!

Understand that some days our spirits wilt like flowers, and we won’t always see the holy. During these times, it’s okay to ask Jesus to tend to our needs, just as my flowers' appearance sometimes requested my attention. Jesus knows. He will nourish us and give us the rest we need: "Take my yoke upon you…, and you will find rest for your souls (Mt. 11:29 NIV)."

Habit #4 - Diligently Weed Out Sinful Behaviors

For me, the least enjoyable part of tending my flowers is the weeding. It is difficult, dirty work. But weeds will take over our garden if we ignore them.

Sin does the same thing in our lives. If we don’t weed it out consistently, it becomes even more challenging to irradicate.

We’d rather not acknowledge sin, but we must deal with it by asking God to show us our areas of sin. Then we admit it, and we ask forgiveness.
If not, sin will hold us back from the life of fullness Jesus intends for us.

Habit #5 - Give Thanks for God's Provision

So tickled was I that my flowers responded to me, I praised them each time I walked outside. I thanked them. I encouraged them. Yes, I became the lady who talked to her plants.

But of course, I was actually praising God, the source of life and all good things. Resisting pride in my accomplishment and praising the Lord instead kept my heart focused on Him. Less of me, more of Thee, God.

The phrase “an attitude of gratitude” is trite, but such a posture encourages joy in our hearts—another by-product of abundant living.

How much or how little we experience the abundant life God promises is up to us. If we develop these five habits, our lives will flourish with abundance, just like my flowers.

"The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever." -Isaiah 40:8 ESV

- Candyce Carden
Candyce Carden, Ed.S; M.Engl; is a writer and teacher in north Georgia. She’s worked with students from kindergarten through college and also served as Director of the Children’s Learning Center for First Baptist Dalton. Candyce has published a variety of articles, essays, curriculum, and devotions. She blogs at You can also connect with Candyce on Facebook and Twitter.
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