“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.”Galatians 5:22-23
When I first became a Christian, I would look at my life and see a distinct lack of fruit. Examining myself in this way was counterproductive and discouraging. What I was doing was expecting my “old self” to produce fruit. Jesus took that old self to the cross and dealt it the deathblow. It is literally fruitless to try to improve it. Instead, I needed to look to Jesus living in me by His Spirit to produce new fruit. He is the Vine from which all fruit comes. I am learning more each year of my life to abide—be rooted—in Him.
If I feel tempted to be impatient or unkind, one Christian writer helped me to say “Your patience, Lord!” or “Your kindness, Lord!” When I acknowledge the Spirit’s sovereignty in my life, the “sap” rushes through the Vine into this “branch” that I am.
Just a few weeks beyond January 1, your useful and well-intentioned New Year’s resolutions may be forgotten already. Remember that it is not our resolve that will keep them. It’s the working of the Spirit within causing new fruit to grow in us.
If we hear the Word of God and receive it, we will bear fruit. Jesus told us so (see Mark 4:20)!
Bible In A Year
- Genesis 47-48
- Psalm 24
- Mark 4