I have been doing a lot of thinking about the fruit of the Spirit the last couple of days. I was praying before our worship service yesterday and my thoughts continually returned to the fruit of the Spirit—the characteristics and character that the Spirit is producing in us. I read these verses to open our worship service yesterday morning: Galatians 5:22-23 NIV But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. I found it hard to pray about anything else except for these nine qualities.
I have been meditating on each word:
These characteristics are the sum total of our ethical behavior as Christ followers, but these are things that I can never produce in and of myself. Dallas Willard in The Divine Conspiracy says that salvation is not so much right doctrine (the ultra-conservative Christian position) or right action (the ultra-liberal Christian position), but rather the kind of person we are becoming. The nine qualities listed in Galatians 5 sums up for me the entirety of who I want to become. I want to be a person of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. These characteristics also describe who Jesus is and I want to be just like him. That has been my prayer: Lord make me a Jesus man…produce within me the love, joy, peace…of the Spirit.
I have been listening to United We Stand by Hillsong United. Good worship from the next generation of Hillsong musicians and worshipers.