Galatians 5:22-23 (NLT) But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!
In the first four chapters of Galatians, Paul writes about the freedom we have when we come to Christ. It is through FAITH we are saved, not following strict laws perfectly. Christ walked a perfect, blameless life on this earth and then took all of our sin on himself to pay the penalty so we could have the freedom to live in him! When we accept him, through FAITH, we are made DEBT FREE. It is a life of FAITH we live… not a life of “law” keeping.
Throughout this journey of faith, we are guided by, and rely on, the Holy Spirit to help us navigate the uncharted waters of everyday life. As we begin to grow in Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit begins to clothe us so we look more like Christ. When we incorporate the fruits of the spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control) into our daily life we work toward being more like Christ.
On my Christian journey through the Holy Spirit’s leading, I have searched my heart to see if I am truly developing the fruits of the spirit within me. Searching myself allows me to take an honest look at each area of my life and determine what I need to change to become more like Christ.
Allow me to explain. Let’s start with the first fruit. This world would have us to believe that we must look out for number one and love ourselves. It is all about us and not about anyone else. “Love of self” is not a fruit of the Spirit – LOVE is. We must love as Christ loved. Christ loved all and served all. So to be more like Christ we have to look beyond ourselves and love…EVERYONE….yep…even the people who grate on our nerves!
As I go through the fruits of the Spirit, I find it helpful when I ask myself questions like these:
- How am I doing with the first (second, third, etc.) fruit of the spirit?
- Do I love like Christ loves? (this question will relate to the corresponding fruit of the Spirit)
- Do I love the unlovable in my life? (this question will relate to the corresponding fruit of the Spirit)
What fruit can you see that needs to be built into your life? Pray and ask the Holy Spirit to reveal what the Lord is working on in you and then allow Him to be your guide through the process.
It helps to remember that developing Christ-like characteristics is a process as we walk deeper in intimacy with Christ. Our It’s a journey – not a check-the-box type thing.
My God bless you on your journey.