Reaching Together with Love, Joy and Peace (Galatians 5:22-23)
Ivington C.E. Primary School is situated very rurally in the outskirts of Leominster, Herefordshire, bordering fields of crop and livestock which we witness thriving each year. During Harvest in September, the land is worked so that the seeds can germinate. During the year, the crops grow, and they are sustained with the essential elements that they need to help them to flourish. Then finally, they are thriving and ready for harvest. Just like the cycle of our lands, here at Ivington, our ambition is to give our pupils the opportunities to be rooted in foundations, blossom like branches to the world and flourish as children of God. Collectively, we are reaching together. The fruit of the spirit (Galatians 5:22-23) signifies our journey as we reach together to become ‘ready’ for life’s challenges.
For us to live a long and fruitful life our lives must be grounded in our roots. To keep us upright and strong we must show goodness by overcoming evil with good and by being aware of morality and making the honest decision (Romans 12: 21). We must live a life of gentleness, being considerate in all that we do (Philippians 4:5). We learn to forgive and show calmness and perseverance in difficult situations. When these situations arise, we encourage our pupils to demonstrate self-control, always keeping themselves safe (Proverbs 22). By being grounded in our roots, we can open our window to the world and have the courage to venture, whilst walking in the path of God.
Much like the expanding world we live in, surrounded with others like us and many who are different, shoots must learn how to navigate the forest they grow amongst in a ‘respectful’ manner. Like the tree’s shoots, we aim to instil values which centre around being respectful, clothing ourselves in compassion and kindness to everyone we meet (Colossians 3: 12). We show compassion and love to one another (John 13: 34-35), being respectful and celebrating our differences. We encourage those whose shoots need more time to grow and show empathy and patience towards them, so that we can be in peace (Proverbs 15:18). We encourage each other to resolve our conflicts so that we all can live a life of peace, living by the teachings of Christ as sons of God (Matthew 5:9).
The best crop grows in an optimal environment where it has fertile soil, grounded roots, and strong shoots. Joy comes to us all when we are ‘ready’ to open our hearts to God and create a relationship with the Holy Spirit (Romans 15:13). Year on year, as the environment, which is created for the fruit changes and adapts, the fruit becomes tastier and more desirable. Likewise, when we show faithfulness, devotion, trust, and dedication to improving ourselves and our relationship with God, we become better global citizens (Roman 12:5), who can aspire be whoever we want to become!