You will only be …
… loving to the degree that you know God is loving with you.
… joyful to the degree that you know God finds joy with you.
… find peace to the degree that you know God is the peace within you.
… patient to the degree that you know God is patient with you.
… kind to the degree that you know God is kind to you.
… faithful to the degree that you know God is faithful to you.
… gentle to the degree that you know God is gentle with you.
… self-controlled to the degree that you know God is self-controlled with you.
These are the statements that we have been asked to contemplate over the last few weeks. Take a moment to reflect on them and ask yourself where you think there may be room for improvement. Pray over each statement and ask the Spirit to cultivate the ones you are led to focus on.
If I look at them altogether, I am overwhelmed! That’s why I am glad that I was only asked to focus on one. Honestly, I can say that none of the fruit of the Spirit comes naturally to me. I need to practice and refer to, study and pray on them. I want to exhibit them all, always, but I can’t do it on my own strength. I need the Holy Spirit who lives in me to overcome my own tendency to be of self. The following passage assures me that the Holy Spirit does indeed live in me.
15 “If you love me obey my commandments. 16 And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another Advocate, who will never leave you. 17 He is the Holy Spirit, who leads into all truth. The world cannot receive him, because it isn’t looking for him and doesn’t recognize him. But you know him, because he lives with you now and later will be in you.”
This passage promises that the Holy Spirit can produce the fruit I desire.
22 But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!
Between now and Labor Day, which fruit would you love to cultivate?
Rewatch the weekend messages from this series, and watch or listen to the podcasts in the area where you are led to focus on. You can find all them in one place at cedarcreek.tv/world. Do a Google search and find passages in the Bible that relate to the fruit you are wanting to cultivate.
Father, I just can’t thank you enough for sending the Holy Spirit to help me find the truth of who you are and who I am in you. Before I found you, I was dead, but now I am alive in you! Every day brings new meaning and purpose as I grow in my relationship with you. Show me where I need to have more love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, or self-control. Equip me to cultivate, harvest, and share the fruit of the Holy Spirit. I pray in Jesus’ name, amen.
This post was written by Julie Estep. Julie loves her husband John and their combined five adult children and four grandchildren. Her favorite activities are walking their two dogs and golfing. She loves sharing her faith and is grateful for the chance to be a LIO contributor.
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