Fruit of the Spirit – Practicing the Fruit of the Spirit Characteristics Daily to Glorify God

Fruit of the Spirit

Fruit of the Spirit – Practicing the Fruit of the Spirit Characteristics Daily to Glorify God

Galatians 5:22-25 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. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the sinful nature with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 

I have read those verses so many times and not really focused on that little sentence. Against such things there is no law. Meaning, if we live by the characteristics laid out by the Holy Spirit we will be living well.

That doesn’t mean there won’t be struggles and suffering in our life. But it means our character won’t be the cause of our pain or someone else’s pain.

As a Christian mental health therapist, I talk often to my clients about the fruit of the Spirit characteristics. We discuss presenting to others in a manner that is glorifying to God and shows his light.

Not every Christian feels comfortable saying “God Bless” or “I’ll pray for you” in public places. And honestly, it’s not always appropriate depending upon the person you are with. We are called to meet a person where they are, not where we want them to be. So sometimes we have to take it slow.

But, against such things there is no law. Show everyone around you the fruit of the Spirit characteristics and it will be noticed. People will want to be around you and know you better. They will want to know how you are who you are. And your answer can be – Jesus Christ!

~ Below is a free printable to help you focus on ways of increasing the fruit of the Spirit characteristics in your daily life.

Love

1 Peter 4:8 Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble.

Love is an active choice. We may experience it but love is not just an emotion. It takes effort. That is true with your spouse, your children, and the person in the grocery line with seventeen thousand coupons. So find ways to show love to the people around you irregardless of what they are showing you. Remember, don’t rely on yourself! Ask the Holy Spirit to help you.

Joy

1 Peter 1:8-9 Though you have not seen Him, you love Him; and even though you do not see Him now, you believe in Him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the goal of your faith, the salvation of your souls.

Have you been around someone filled with joy? They are lit from the inside and their presence is infectious. Joy happens when you become flooded with a positive experience and emotion. I can’t think of anything more positive than knowing that just because of grace we are saved! When we sit in that knowledge and view our surroundings through blessings and thanksgiving then joy follows.

Peace

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

Peace is being settled in the knowledge that God is in control and has a plan for you. A person who has peace is a comfort to be around. You can feel how grounded they are. How steady. People who are unsettled tend to lean in to people who have peace. As a Christian therapist, the best thing I can do for my clients when they are distraught and overwhelmed is to exude peace and provide a calm and steady in the room for them. Peace quiets the heart and allows the person to hear the Holy Spirit.

Patience

James 5:7-8 Be patient, then, brothers, until the Lord’s coming. See how the farmer waits for the land to yield its valuable crop and how patient he is for the autumn and spring rains. You too, be patient and stand firm, because the Lord’s coming is near.

Patience has fallen by the wayside in society currently. We have become a people of instant gratification. Everything is fast and at our fingertips and when it’s not, we get disappointed and irritated. Providing patience for other people has become unexpected. A person feels heard and seen when we give them our patience and our time. It shows them they are worth waiting for and being with. Who doesn’t want to feel that way?!

Kindness

Romans 12:13 Share with God’s people who are in need. Practice hospitality. (kindness)

Caring for someone in all circumstances is kindness. We shouldn’t have exceptions or qualification to when we show kindness. So that means even the person who cut you off in traffic. Or the barista who rudely asked you what you want. Kindness is going out of your way to take the grocery cart back for the single-mom with three kids. It’s offering to let someone else go in line before you. Kindness are small acts.

Goodness

2 Thessalonians 1:11 With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose (goodness) of yours and every act prompted by your faith. 

Goodness is holding firm to what is right. No matter what. Goodness is not gray. I struggle with the current movie trend of providing a sad back story of the evil character to then provide empathy and justification for their wickedness. It muddies the water for children. Stealing, lying, and harming others are never okay not matter the circumstances.

I have clients who have endured horrendous trauma and dysfunction in their past and because of it they have fallen into distorted thinking patterns and logic. I understand why it has happened and provide empathy for their situation but we work to move beyond the past and follow goodness that is described in God’s word.

Faithfulness

Lamentations 3:22-24 Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The Lord is my portion; therefore I will wait for Him.”

I don’t understand why certain things happen in our lives. No one does. And truthfully, we’re not meant to. That is faith. It’s not knowing all of the answers to our whys and hows but believing anyway. Faithfulness is knowing God loves us and wants what is best for us at all times. Faithfulness is seeking God daily to receive His love, strength, and guidance because that is enough.

Gentleness

1 Peter 4:15 But in your hearts set apart Christ as Lord. Always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect.

I strongly dislike the phrase “constructive criticism”. No matter how you package it, it’s still criticism. However we are called to provide truth in love. That is gentleness. There are many times my clients are living in a way that goes against God’s teachings. They may or may not be believers in Christ. I can’t go in guns a blazin’ and tell them they are wrong and damned to hell. How is that helpful?

Gentleness doesn’t mean being a pushover or a doormat. It means having a soft approach when speaking truth. Share your genuine concern for their well-being because of their actions. Scolding only makes the other person feel belittled and become guarded.

Self-Control

2 Peter 1:5-7 For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. 

Like patience, self-control does not have much place in society currently. YOLO (you only live once) right?! Except what good comes from impulsiveness and unfiltered reactions? You end up saying things you don’t mean or that are hurtful. You overindulge – with food, alcohol, money, etc. Often impulsiveness is followed by remorse, guilt and shame. Self-control takes discipline and strength. And rarely can be done alone (or not for long) without the God’s strength to help you remain steady. While friends and strangers alike may heckle you for your restraint, self-control is admirable and they likely will ask how you are able to endure. Now you get to share with them God’s love.

I sincerely hope this message has helped you and encouraged you to focus on fruit of the Spirit characteristics to live in the manner we are called to. Because against such things there is no law. 

God Bless

Melissa Gendreau

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About Melissa

Melissa is a Christian mental health therapist, wife and mommy of two. She works with children, teens, adults, and couples to better manage their distress and hopefully become closer to God in the process.

24 comments on “Fruit of the Spirit – Practicing the Fruit of the Spirit Characteristics Daily to Glorify God

  1. What a beautiful article. I loved where you say, “That doesn’t mean there won’t be struggles and suffering in our life. But it means our character won’t be the cause of our pain or someone else’s pain.” It really made me think. Too often we are lead to believe that we are promised the golden ticket to a life without heartache when we come to Christ. But there is suffering and pain sometimes. Thank you for putting it so beautifully.

    • If we only had joy we wouldn’t get the honor of knowing God as the great healer and comforter that He is! I’m glad the article touched you! God Bless!

    • I’m so glad you like the post! I think we all need to focus more on the fruits of the spirit! Thank you for reading and commenting! God Bless!

  2. Since they are fruit and not fruits, we can work on one and have them all – all to bless others and be blessed all at once! To be filled means I need an emptying on my part.

  3. What a beautiful article! I love how you used the word “practice” there for implying that we CHOOSE, which we really do !! I really appreciated your insight that we “meet someone where they are,” even when applying the FRUITS OF THE SPIRIT. Thank you for this Melissa! I pinned it on my Christian Living board.

    • Thank you, Tammy for you kind and encouraging words. Your comments are always like a loving hug! Thank you for reading and commenting! God bless!

    • Thank you Emily! I’m glad you found it beneficial. Yes, we definitely cannot make excuses in an attempt to get away with behavior less than good. Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. God bless!

    • It is nice to have multiple perspectives. I love when I read different posts and articles about the same topic to pick up all the different tidbits. Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. God bless!

  4. Wonderful way of describing the Fruits of the Spirit and breaking each down to a clearer understanding. Thank you for the attached printable can’t wait to fill it out!

    • I’m glad you found the post beneficial! I hope the printable brings growth in whatever fashion God leads you to focus on. Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. God bless!

  5. Love this! Seems like the fruit of the Spirit is on my radar lately, God must be telling me something!
    I know I need to grow all those fruits(with help of the Holy Spirit) 🙂

    • I’m pretty sure each of us needs to focus greater attention on at least a couple! I’m glad you enjoyed the post. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts. God bless!

  6. We studied the fruit of the spirit a few years back in my Bible study and one of my biggest take-a-ways was how each fruit flows into one another. You can’t have kindness without goodness. Patience without self-control. Gentleness without love.

    • It does absolutely teach the exact opposite. Which is one of the reasons why our divorce rate is so high. It’s truly sad. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts. God bless!

  7. I must say, it has been a while since I have really focused on the Fruits of the Spirit. I feel convicted to work on a couple of these. Showing joy with my family, portraying gentleness to my husband. Thank you for reminding me how important it is to embody these fruits. In them, we can live holy lives for our Lord! <3

    • I’m glad the post convicted you to focus on some of these characteristics. I’m fairly certain each of us could benefit for a bit extra attention to these areas! Thank you for stopping by and sharing your thoughts. God bless!

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