How to Experience the Fruit of The Spirit ~ blog
What if the spirit of another person were able to be in your body? Like you want to play a better game of golf and the spirit of Tiger Woods came into you. Or basketball and you could get the spirit of Lebron James or Michael Jordan. Or football / soccer and the spirit of Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo entered you and you could become amazing.
If that were to happen there is still one thing that you would need to do to be able to play as they played. You would have to practice and develop until your body was in the athletic shape of theirs in order to be able to do what they can do. Even the spirit of these great athletes would only be able to do much because even though the spirit would be willing your flesh would be weak and unable to perform at their level.
The Spirit of God dwells inside of your body. That’s right, God lives in you by the presence of the Holy Spirit. His ultimate purpose is to transform you from the person you were into a person who is living and acting like Jesus. And He will do that, but not automatically. It takes time and practice, working to develop the spiritual disciplines so that as your spiritual strength grows stronger you will be able to be living like Christ.
So, what are the changes I should hope to see if I put in the work? What is the work that I need to put in? Is there a workout program or a Peloton exercise machine I can get to help me become more spiritually strong? Is it a matter of stretching, weightlifting, and cardio that will allow the Spirit to then begin to make me more like Jesus?
As a matter of fact, there is. It is not a machine, a set of weights, or cardio routines that will sweat you into a more Christ-like person. However, it is not a physical workout that will transform your life and make you more like Jesus. It is a spiritual routine that needs to be in place for the changes or the fruit of the Spirit to begin to develop.
And just like I would need to get myself in physical shape before the spirit of Woods could improve my golf game, so will getting into spiritual shape be used by the Holy Spirit to begin to make me more like Jesus. I will begin to bear the fruit of the Spirit and my actions will be godlier and I will become more like Christ. But it takes working on this daily.
So, just like everybody uses a before and after photos to show you the progress they have made physically through diet and exercise, we can get a glimpse of what we will look like and be acting like if we do the daily spiritual workout we need to be doing to be growing in Christ and beginning to bear the fruit of the Spirit.
You cannot see a difference in the way that they look. However, you will see and hear a difference in the way they act and the words they say. The fruit of the Spirit is not muscles you can flex but they will be seen and heard in the actions you do, the actions you do not do, the words you will say, and the words you will stop saying.
So, before we get into the essentials of a spiritual workout program let’s get motivated by looking at the fruits that the Spirit will begin to bring into your life. Like someone might put the image of a thinner and in shape person on the refrigerator to motivate them and remind them of their goal before opening the door and grabbing another pint of Ben and Jerry’s, these fruit of the Spirit will tell us of the changes the Spirit will begin to develop and grow in our life. We find then in Galatians 5:22-23;
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience,
kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness
What would your life be like if you become more loving? The word for love here is the Greek word “agape.” It is the word for love that describes God’s love for you. It is love that is unconditional and sacrificial. It is love that someone not only has but it is love that takes action. It is not just saying to someone; “I love you.” Because we all know those words may not be true. Agape love is an unconditional love that demonstrates itself in actions not just announcing itself with empty words.
“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son…” John 3:16
“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
We might tell our spouses that we love them. However, after they know about our sexual sin those words are empty and of no value. They cannot believe that if we really loved them that we would then turn our sexual lusts to images of thousands of others, making them the object of our desires. They must begin to see the fruit of the Spirit in your loving actions to do whatever it takes for you to get the help you need to stop all sexual sin in your life.
It will be deeds of unconditional love, showing her that you are taking the steps of love to demonstrate your love for her. And when you do an act of love, I know from my own miserable experience, that we want credit for it. Pointing out your actions to get credit for them demonstrates that it was not a loving action for her but was you trying to make points, and the very fact that you feel you must tell her for her to know reveals not a loving intent but a selfish motive.
So, if and when you do an unconditional act of selfless love just do it whether she notices it or not. She will. She might say thank you or she might not. That doesn’t matter because an act of agape love does not need to be noticed to be effective. The idea is not to demonstrate your love so she will notice, but to demonstrate love because you need to be showing yourself that you love her. She will grow more confident that you love her by your actions and not your words.
The Holy Spirit will begin to bear in you the fruit of love. Tomorrow…the fruit of Joy!