Fruit of the Spirit

In Galatians 5:22-23, Paul writes, “…the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” He contrasts these to the “works of the flesh” which are “…fornication, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, anger, quarrels, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these.”

Until this morning, I never noticed that the ‘works of the flesh’ are plural but the fruit of the Spirit is singular. When we settle into the grace and mercy Jesus offers us, and allow the Spirit to bear fruit in our lives, we become “…love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” Yet while I’m sure most of us aren’t rampant practitioners of “…the works of the flesh,” I’m not sure how easy it is for us to believe/trust that are have the fruit of the Spirit growing in our lives, especially when the ‘goodness’ of the fruit of the Spirit is so rich and plentiful. My mantra for today is: “I am love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” Not the shortest mantra, but a nice invitation to use to invite myself back to the goodness that resides within me through Christ and the presence of the Spirit within.

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