Intend to Live: THE FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT
Our life is like a plant or tree in different illustrations from the Bible. One that my family loves (my wife’s favorite verse) is John 15:5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. The one who remains in Me and I in him produces much fruit, because you can do nothing without Me.”
We should produce love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness, self-control, and saved souls as well!
Our lives are to be productive. In order for our lives to be productive, we must IntendtoLive!
Look at what the Bible says about living without spiritual vision, a spiritual plan, or spiritual guidance…“When people do not accept divine guidance, they run wild. But whoever obeys the law is joyful.”
Here’s another version of this scripture…“Where there is no vision [no redemptive revelation of God], the people perish; but he who keeps the law [of God, which includes that of man]–blessed (happy, fortunate, and enviable) is he.”
To INTEND is to have a plan, to have a course of action for one’s purpose or objective. Our plan should be centered on Christ and on the Word of God from his instructions in the Bible. The Bible is very practical and gives us many examples of what to do and what not to do. It’s full of lives lived that, I’m sure, those who’s stories are being told aren’t glad that their lives are in God’s word for eternity. All of us have failed and would be embarrassed to have our story written for the world to know. King David, the man after God’s own heart, failed miserably with Bathsheba. How embarrassing it is that his failure is written for all people to read about. But what Satan meant for destruction, God turned into good. David repented with a prayer that so many of us need to put to use in our lives…“God, create a clean heart for me and renew a steadfast spirit within me.”
Only by following God’s instructions, with the help of the Holy Spirit Himself, can we produce the Fruits of the Spirit.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, self-control. Against such things there is no law.”
The way we produce these fruits is through relationships. We must have healthy relationships with God and with others. This is inline with the greatest commandments to Love God with all of our being and to love others ahead of ourselves.
We must seek to produce LOVE, JOY, PEACE, PATIENCE, KINDNESS, GOODNESS, FAITH, GENTLENESS, AND SELF-CONTROL in our lives.
We need these characteristics in our lives to serve people and be significant in the lives of others. We need love to serve “our neighbor” which is any and all people around us. If we do not love them we won’t care about them, we won’t serve them well, we won’t treat them better than ourself. Instead, we’d use them and abuse them for selfish reasons. Love is something we can look to God and Christ for an example that is hard or impossible to meet but is good for us. It’s like reaching for the stars in order to get to the moon. God gave up His own Son for us. Jesus gave up His life for us and suffered for our sake. Then, the Holy Spirit himself, who is the one who enables us to produce His fruits, comes and helps us even though we were/are the reason God had to send his Son and Jesus had to give up His life. God the Father, Jesus His Son, and The Holy Spirit are all GOD in one.
We must spend time in God’s Word, in prayer, and then align our lives accordingly and ask for Him, the Holy Spirit, to help us live and be productive; to produce the good fruit for Him. Our producing of this fruit allows more of the Kingdom of God into our lives and more of the Will of God to be done on Earth as it is done in Heaven.
Joy is not a feeling but something we have in spite of circumstances. Peace is something that the Holy Spirit gives us when our natural reaction or feeling is anxiousness. We can have peace that passes understanding. Look it up! (Hint Philippians 4:7) We can have patience which is something we all could use more of to understand our spouse, our children, our boss, our co-workers, our parents, our friends, and best of all, to wait on God. We all could use more patience. The Holy Spirit can help you produce patience. Ask for His help. Kindness helps us be relatable and helpful to others. Goodness helps us be generous and want good things for others. Gentleness is a big one. Gentleness is something we could all use more of. Especially the men. I need more gentleness in my life in relating to my family and co-workers. Faith! With a small amount of faith, we can ask God for things and He will show us how BIG He is. He can move mountains in our lives if we can be patient and persistent and have faith. We all want and need more self-control. How awesome would it be if you did everything as you needed to do it. You ate only what you needed to eat for a healthy life, you worked out when you wanted to regularly, you said ‘yes’ to only what you should do and have time for and said ‘no’ to anything you didn’t need to do. If we had self-control, we’d be productive, be in great shape, have plenty of time, and spend our time on our priorities and not waist it.
I hope you’ll pray today asking for the Holy Sprit to fill your life and align your actions with the Bible so that you’ll produce more love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, and self-control.
I hope you are encouraged,
Intend to Live!