What is this Fruit? Galatians 5:22–23 gives us the answer: "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance. Against such there is no law." The Fruit of the Spirit, then, is the true character of the Christian life that replaces the self-life, or old man, as the Scriptures label our sin nature (Ephesians 4:22-24). The result will be that you will fulfill the intended purpose of the Law – loving God and man (Galatians 5:23).
The first three of the Fruit – love, joy, and peace are primarily inner virtues. The next three virtues – longsuffering, gentleness, and goodness deal more with social situations; best expressed in our relations with others. The last three virtues – faith, meekness, and temperance are all linked to one’s personal discipline.
Jesus taught His disciples they could only be fruitful as a direct result of abiding in Him; a relationship that is carefully nurtured. Jesus explained how He would make it possible for His disciples to abide in Him and bear the same Fruit. First, He would send the Holy Spirit (the mind and power of God) after His death to abide in them and Second, to guide them (John 16:5-7; John 14:26). The Holy Spirit is the Christ-life within you that produces the Fruit of godly character in you.
This month we will concentrate on: “But the fruit of the Spirit is GENTLENESS (Kindness) – It is love in action through an outward demonstration of looking beyond oneself to contribute to the happiness of others, which is exercised cheerfully in gratifying their wishes, supplying their needs or alleviating their distresses (1 Thessalonians 2:7).
Gentleness is humbly giving of yourself in love and mercy to others who may not be able to give anything back; who sometimes do not deserve it; and who frequently do not thank you for it. Basically, gentleness means a way of thinking that leads to doing thoughtful deeds for others. It is based on the mind-set described in Philippians 2:3-4: “Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests, but also for the interests of others.”
Gentleness is also love in action through your speech. Words can encourage or depress an individual. Words that bring healing, that contribute to a person’s emotional health, are like a tree of life, a source of strength and growth. Words that are unkind can crush the spirit or depress one’s morale (Proverbs 15:4).
Gentleness is what you do, what you say, and what you think (Titus 3:2). Foolishness leads to disorder, but wisdom leads to peace and gentleness (James 3:17).
A couple examples of ways to show kindness include:
o Give true compliments (not flattery) to others to help brighten their day.
o Interact with strangers instead of just walking by them or looking down at the ground (open doors for them, smile, say hello, help them carry something).
The variety of people that you encounter in your life will help you develop and use this virtue – Gentleness/Kindness. The incidents in life that you refer to as “interruptions” (and usually do not welcome) are really God’s appointments that He allows your way for a purpose (Romans 8:28). Often your spiritual growth is part of that purpose (Romans 8:29). Think about it!
Christians are tools to extend God’s lovingkindness and mercy to the world. They are to reflect the light and example of His compassion, mercy, and gentleness/-kindness. They are to become like Him! (Matthew 5:45; Romans 5:8; 2 Corinthians 1:4).
Remember, Gentleness is not a selfish attempt to get something for ourselves. It is a show of mercy and love to other human beings with no thought of reward. May we all develop the same type of love and kindness God has for us.
In order to bear good Fruit, you must first join your life to Jesus Christ (John 14:6). In order to join your life to Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, you must believe in Him and receive His offer of forgiveness (1 Corinthians 15:1-4; Romans 10:9-10).
You can use the following prayer or your own words: Lord Jesus, I believe You are truly the Son of God, who came in the flesh. I believe You died for me and that Your blood pays for my sins and your resurrection provides me with the gift of eternal life. I receive You as my personal Savior and Lord. Thank You for saving me. Help me to live a life that is pleasing to You. Amen.
The tendency to sin remains part of the human experience, but as a Believer, you have been set free from sin’s power over you and no longer have to give into it (Romans 6). Willingly turn from your sins and nail your natural evil desires to the cross, how, by daily confessing your sins (1 John 1:9), committing your sinful tendencies to God’s control (Philippians 2:13), crucifying them, and moment by moment drawing on the Holy Spirit’s power to overcome them (Galatians 2:20; 5:24; 6:14).
Contact us and let us know you received Jesus Christ as your Savior and Lord on 301-873-2500 or email@example.com so that we may pray for you and with you.