Posted February 11th, 2014 by Leah and filed in Leah Richardson

Recently a friend shared a story with me about an associate pastor who was forced to leave his position with his church due to the extreme stress he was experiencing. Stress that perpetuated physical distress. Stress of working in a ministry. Stress of working for a church proclaiming the GOOD NEWS of loving Jesus. Stress of working in an environment that most secular companies would not tolerate.

As I listened in sadness, my friend said, “I don’t see any FRUITS of the Holy Spirit.” I corrected {terrible habit!}, and said, “It is the FRUIT of the Holy Spirit, not plural.”

Walking away, I thought about our conversation. When I make a list, I call it the items, plural, on my list, but a grocery list is different. Although many of the items work together to make a delicious meal, one isn’t conditional on the other. I can substitute, even leave that extra cup of sugar out and all is fine. I found myself mulling over, meditating on Galatians 6:22, regarding keeping in step with the Spirit of God.

But the FRUIT of the Spirit is

love, joy, peace, patience,

kindness, goodness, faithfulness,

gentleness, self-control;

against such things there is no law.


Can I really love from the heart and be impatient and unkind? Can I have such a settled peace about my relationship with Jesus and let my tongue rage out of control? The FRUIT of the Holy Spirit, the character of God displayed in my life…this word FRUIT, in some translations, is substituted with the word benefit. The benefit of the Holy Spirit living and dwelling in my heart is love. is peace. is patience. is kindness. is goodness. is faithfulness. is gentleness. is self-control. They all work together. All of God or none of God displayed in my life?

When we are unloving, miserable, anxious, impatient, unkind, mean, rough and completely out of control…are we being FAITHFUL or UNFAITHFUL to God?

But the FRUIT of the Holy Spirit…

Scripture is infallible…not fruits plural, but singular. Oh the manifold wisdom of God! Help us Lord to keep in step with your Spirit, displaying as one, the One. Purge the smelly rotten fruit from our lives and fill us with big, fat juicy FRUIT of your precious Spirit. Bookend our lives with Love and Self-control. Speak to each of us personally and show us where our partial obedience is no obedience at all.

Overflow all of God in our lives. The FRUIT of the Holy Spirit…







One Response to “Got FRUIT?”

  1. I like the picture of ‘bookending’ our lives with Love and Self Control. Great word, friend.

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