Fruit of the Spirit, Part IV
Just before the great passage in Galatians that expounds the Fruit of the Spirit comes a warning and a list of the opposites of the good Fruit, the destroyers of churches, relationships, and self! This all comes down to our willingness to either live a life that is led by the Spirit or one that is led by our flesh, that of our pride and will.
We have to realize that the Fruit of the Spirit is a "must" endeavor--not a convenience or a mere attitude, nor is it just for children or something to be ignored. Rather, it is a principle hallmark that points to God's Holiness and effectual Christian living. It is not something we are to regulate to the youth departments of the church, thinking we have grown beyond it as adults. Rather, it is the most important thing a Christian and, especially a minister of the Word and church leader, is to be doing. It is who we are to be, growing and maturing as a lifelong journey of our spiritual formation our faith development and deployment.
"I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me" (Galatians 2:20-21).
These words simply mean that I choose to break away from my way of doing things, to focus on and embrace God's ways.
When we start to think and believe more biblically, we will have lives that bring about love and goodness. We can have love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control flowing in, through, and out of us. If we rather focus on what someone did to us or what we did not get, we will bring about chaos and suffering instead of the hope and the prosperity of faith, which is what the Fruit of the Spirit brings to the table of life.