Gentleness - Fruit of the Spirit Episode 9

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22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
— Galatians 5:22-23

I don’t know what you think of when you think of gentleness. There are a couple of people that come to mind for me, but I don’t want to put them on the spot and embarrass them. So in an effort to relate to most folks, I’d like for you to think back to the very first newborn baby you ever held.

Remember the gentle way you received them from the person handing them to you. You held them with both hands carefully supporting their precious head. You took such care to be “gentle” with the newborn.

That is the fruit the Holy Spirit is developing in every believer. Some of us need more work in that area of fruit than other, but we are all growing in that attribute.

I’m studying in the Old Testament right now and sometimes it seems our Lord was very harsh, yet throughout the judgement and discipline He demonstrates, He also demonstrates gentleness with His people and with some foreigners who trust Him. (Rahab and Ruth come to mind.)

Faithfulness - Fruit of the Spirit Episode 8

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22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
— Galatians 5:22-23

Aren’t you so glad our God is FAITHFUL? I am! I am currently in a Bible study and each week the first question of our lesson is “How have you seen God at work in your life this week?” Let me tell you, every single week I am reminded of God’s faithfulness.

I remember when we built our house I wanted the underneath of my cabinets stained. My husband told me then I could stain them. In the heat of the moment, I said I would. Well then he went off to work and I set about staining the underneath of my cabinets.

Let me tell you in about 30 seconds I wanted to quit that and let the cabinets be. My arms were on fire. But stain I did. When he got home the first thing out of my mouth to him was, “Aren’t you proud of me? I stained all of the underneath of the cabinets!”

He looked at me funny and said, “Well, you said you would.”

Right then I was reminded what it means to be faithful. People take you at your word. I said I would stain the cabinets and he counted it as done. Yes, I finally told him how bad it hurt and how much I wanted to quit. He just laughed with me because he knew how bad it would hurt being in an awkward position for that long.

I wish I could say that I’m always faithful, but we both know we are not always faithful. There are those times we say something that doesn’t mean much to us but it means a lot to the person we are talking to'; thus, they count on us and we don’t remember to follow through. Hopefully, that’s not the norm for any of us, but my point is I am not always faithful. But my Jesus is!

I’m so glad Jesus put the Holy Spirit in us as His deposit or guarantee that we are His, that He is coming back for us, that we will be conformed into His image, that we are never alone and on and on. As the Holy Spirit leads us to maturity He is developing the attribute of faithfulness in us.

What are some things we should be faithful in?

  • Our love for Christ - to love Him with all our heart, soul and strength

  • Our serving others - by serving others we are serving Jesus Christ

  • In our marriage - by being loving and faithful to our spouse we are presenting a picture of God and His bride

  • In honesty and integrity - letting our yes be yes and our no be no people know they can trust what we say; doing what’s right because it’s right

    and the list goes on.

We should be faithful because God is faithful.

God is faithful, by whom you were called into the fellowship of his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 1 Corinthians 1:9

So I have a question for you, “How have you seen God at work in your life this week?”

Goodness - Fruit of the Spirit Episode 7

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22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
— Galatians 5: 22-23

Is there anyway you could explain the fullness of God’s goodness to you? Neither can I! His love and mercy and goodness is beyond what we can comprehend much less explain to someone else.

And yet, that is a part of the fruit of the spirit that the Holy Spirit is developing in us!

I knew a doctor once who I never heard say an ill word about someone. Ever. One day while working together, we found out about something that was, well, it was terrible. As this doctor talked about the incident, he never once said an ill remark about the person who was the guilty party. I looked at him and said, “You know, Doc, I don’t think you’d say anything bad about the devil. I’ve never heard you say anything bad about anyone.” He laughed and said he didn’t think he could say something good about the devil.

But the point is, what a great testimony/reputation! I wish that were true about me but, alas, I’m afraid not. However, through the years the Holy Spirit is changing me, for the better!

As believers, our first response should be toward goodness; giving the benefit of the doubt, lending a helping hand, or choosing encouraging conversation.

We are the recipients of God’s goodness and should therefore be the extension of His goodness, don’t you think?

Oh, how abundant is your goodness, which you have stored up for those who fear you and worked for those who take refuge in you, in the sight of the children of mankind!

Psalm 31:19

If God were to say to you - “I could give you what you’ve prayed for OR I can give you what you’d truly desire IF you knew what I know.” Which would you choose?

Kindness - Fruit of the Spirit Episode 6

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22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
— Galatians 5:22-23 ESV

Kindness. People around us need some kindness. We loose sight of that sometimes when it seems others are not kind to us. But the Holy Spirit will develop this fruit within us. Our job is to practice kindness.

I’ve joined a Bible Study Fellowship and a few weeks ago. We are studying the People of the Promised Land and we’re in Joshua now. One of the ladies in my class made the comment that Joshua listened, prepared and took action.

How do you practice kindness? I’m glad you asked.

LISTEN -The first and foremost way we must practice kindness is by getting in God’s Word - daily. The more we seek the Lord through prayer and Bible study the more we will be allowing the Holy Spirit to develop kindness in us.

PREPARE -Next, put a smile on your face. Start the smiling first thing in the morning, even when no one by you are present! Listen to some uplifting Christian music and meditate on what you studied in God’s Word.

ACTION -Then put it into action by being kind to yourself and those you come in contact with each day. We are kind to ourselves by forgiving ourselves when we have sought forgiveness, by letting things go when we can’t change them and by remembering to Whom we belong. We are kind to others by smiling at them, listening to them and speaking nicely to them, even when we may have to say something that is painful.

You and I both know it’s not always easy to be kind, but it’s always the right thing to do. After all, how will others see Jesus and “want” Jesus if they can’t see Him in His followers.

12 Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, 13 bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. -Colossians 3:12-13