The Real FruitBack to Today's Devotional
This week we looked at Galatians 5:22–26. We looked at how we must get our lives in tune with the Spirit and cultivate our relationship with Jesus Christ. We saw that we cannot produce the fruit of the Spirit through our own efforts. We took a look in the mirror to see if we could see a glimpse of Christ in our reflection.
We talked about how the Spirit puts love, joy, and peace in our souls even in the midst of the darkest times. We read how patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control are all produced by the Spirit, and that no matter how we try to obey every law perfectly to earn that fruit, we just cannot manufacture the fruit of the Spirit ourselves.
I think our scripture as stated in The Message makes it all very clear:
But what happens when we live God's way? He brings gifts into our lives, much the same way that fruit appears in an orchard—things like affection for others, exuberance about life, serenity. We develop a willingness to stick with things, and a sense of compassion in the heart, and a conviction that a basic holiness permeates things and people. We find ourselves involved in loyal commitments, not needing to force our way in life, able to marshal and direct our energies wisely.
Legalism is helpless in bringing this about; it only gets in the way. Among those who belong to Christ, everything connected with getting our own way and mindlessly responding to what everyone else calls necessities is killed off for good—crucified.
Since this is the kind of life we have chosen, the life of the Spirit, let us make sure that we do not just hold it as an idea in our heads or a sentiment in our hearts, but work out its implications in every detail of our lives. That means we will not compare ourselves with each other as if one of us were better and another worse. We have far more interesting things to do with our lives. Each of us is an original. (The Message, Galatians 5:22–26)
Questions for Reflection/Discussion: Can you think of a time in your life when you witnessed the fruit of the Spirit in someone else's life? Can you share a time when you experienced the fruit in your own life?
This week's devotions were written by Donna Melby. Donna has been a member of Wheaton Bible Church for three years. A widow with six children and fourteen grandchildren, her favorite verse is 3 John 1:4, “I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth.”