The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.( Galatians 5:22 CEB)
Take a moment and let the “eyes of your heart” linger on each quality in this verse. Are there a few of these you are especially longing to experience in your life right now? I have good news! If you are a daughter of God through relationship with Jesus Christ, then every single one of these qualities belongs to you. In fact, each holy virtue is alive and well right now in your spirit.
When you confessed that you were a sinner and accepted the provision of Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross for the payment of your sin debt, then your spirit came spiritually alive in Christ. As you trusted Him as your Lord and Savior, God’s Holy Spirit moved in and took up residence in your spirit.
All of you surely know you are God’s temple and His Spirit lives in you.
(1 Corinthians 3:16 CEV)
So if God’s Spirit lives inside of us, why do we so often exhibit such unholy behavior?
The answer to that question comes with the understanding of your spiritual and fleshly natures. In fact, it’s critical that you differentiate between the two, if you want to exhibit more Christ-like behaviors.
When I move into moments of FREAK OUT (you understand those moments, right?), I find it extremely helpful to pause and consider what’s going on in my flesh in contrast to what’s going on in my spirit. In my spirit there’s perfect peace, gentleness, and patience. It’s my fleshly nature (mind, body, and emotions) that wreaks havoc. So when I have those flashes of anger or impatience, it’s my fleshly nature, not my spiritual one, that is leading. I’ve gradually trained myself to stop and pay attention, differentiating between these two natures. When life is taking me under, I pray . . . Lord, I want my spiritual nature – YOUR NATURE – to lead right now. Give me strength to yield my fleshly nature to my spirit, rather than allowing my flesh to sling me around.
It takes being alert and determined to live in the powerful reality of who we truly are as God’s daughters. We don’t have to be victims of a crazed mind or erratic emotions. God has given us the ability and every spiritual resource needed to take charge of our fleshly reactions and live with the fruit of the Spirit leading us.
Make it Practical
The next time your stress buttons are pushed, STOP and PRAY. Ask God for strength to exhibit His Holy Fruit living inside of you.
Through Him, you can do this!
Not by might nor by power, but by My Spirit, says the LORD Almighty.
(Zechariah 4:6 NIV)