by Nan Doud, Guest Writer
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also keep in step with the Spirit.
I can’t adorn myself with the fruit listed in Today’s Treasure. They must be born in me through the crucifixion of my sinful desires. Any attempt to affix faux fruits will fail and fall to the ground. My husband always refers to our human desire to accomplish a “fruity” look without the life of the Spirit pumping through our veins as “fruit stapling.” How silly would a tree look with dead fruit staple gunned all over?
The fact is, every day that I live in what Paul refers to as “this body of death” will be a literal battle against my own sinful desires. If you are a believer in Jesus this will be true of you too. If we are battling our desires unarmed, unwatered, and spiritually under-nourished we are guaranteed to fail to produce these fruits organically and will always default to “fruit stapling.”
As He exposes the hidden motives of my heart to me and calls me to put off those things, that rotten deadness that characterizes who I was without Him, to make room for the fruit of the Spirit to grow, He is showing me that I cannot effectively do so unless I’m in the word regularly drinking deeply of His grace and truth and continually seeking Him in prayer.
I’m thankful this is our common struggle and I am not alone in it. You aren’t either. We are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses.
Thank you Father, that the process to make room for the Fruit of the Spirit to grow in me means that you will expose the hidden motives of my heart to me and call me to put off those things, that rotten deadness that characterizes who I was without You. Please keep the realization ever before me that I need to be in the word regularly, drinking deeply of Your grace and truth, and continually seeking You in prayer.
Nan Doud and her husband, Shawn, currently minister alongside one another at Samaritan Ministries International as Needs Advocates. They have spent 21 years of marriage in full time Christian ministry while raising their four boys who are all teenagers now. Nan enjoys writing poetry and meditations on the intersection of life and grace as expressed in the Bible. She loves articulating and dialoguing with people on how the gospel touches both our cultural and individual struggles.
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