But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.
If you have been a Christian for any amount of time these verses will be very familiar to you. And if you are like me, it is easy to fall into this mindset that the fruit of the Spirit is some Christian check list of virtues that I have to work on in order be more acceptable as a Christian.
This is actually a wrong way of looking at these verses. The virtues that are listed are virtues that we already possess. The fruit of the Spirit is manifested in the life of every believer to some degree. Sure they may seem a bit weak at times, but if you have the Spirit dwelling in you then you also have the fruit of the Spirit as well.
If we were perfect, these fruit would be perfectly displayed in our lives. But we are not perfect. Not yet. And so these virtues are also not perfect in us. But there is a way for us to grow and to mature as a Christian and when we do, the fruit of Spirit shine brighter and are more visible in our lives.
How to Grow in the Fruit of The Spirit
It all begins with a vine. Do you remember the passage in John 15 where Jesus says “I am the true vine”? He goes on to say, “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing” (Jn 15:4-5).
The quality of our fruit is directly connected to how closely we are connected to Jesus, the vine.
If we are barely hanging on, if our connection to Jesus is weak, if we are not feeding on the word of God and having communion with Jesus through prayer, then our fruit will be small.
If, on the other hand, we understand that Christ is a perfect branch, without any defeat or weakness, and we attach ourselves as closely as we can to him, then we will not only bear fruit, but “much fruit” (Jn 15:5).
I know that there are days when we feel that the fruit of the Spirit is barely visible. We feel weak or unproductive and believe that we will never change or grow. Don’t fall for this lie! Gal. 5:25 reminds us that we have been crucified with Christ! Our old self – our sinful nature – has been put to death. We have been made new! And while sin still clings to us, it no longer has power over us. We are overcomers because of the death of Christ and we can grow in the fruit of the Spirit because the resurrecting power of Jesus works mightily in those who cling to him.
Looking to Jesus,
Stay tuned for our the revealing of our NEXT study!!!!! Can’t wait to share it with you!!!! We have one more week in Galatians! Let’s finish strong!!!