Opportunity to Develop the 9 Fruits
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22 ESV
Need practice developing the nine fruits of the Spirit? Just plan airline travel. Love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control – oh yes, they will ALL be tested.
My husband and I took a trip recently which was no exception. From the airline switching our flight without notification, to a cancelled flight home, to lost luggage (golf clubs, no doubt), it was definitely a challenge to remember these important character traits described in Galatians, especially patience.
Isn’t it amazing, though, how many stories we hear about the agonies of traveling? I’m sure one such tale is coming to your mind right now. A journey full of unexpected twists and turns is, unfortunately, a common experience many of us share. Ironically, if we are earnestly practicing the fruits, it is during those times that God will direct us to something unexpected…something divine…something miraculous. An encounter only He could have predestined, and one we would have likely missed if it hadn’t been for the delays, the mishaps, and the cancellations.
Most of our divine appointments don’t happen when we arrive at our destination, but during the travel time in between.
The key to the verse written by Paul can be found not in the nine traits listed, but in these three powerful words,
“of the Spirit…”
God does not expect us to be all of these things on our own. In fact, we can’t. This level of maturity in character can only come from living with the guidance of the Holy Spirit, and during those trying moments when we most fully rely on Him, we will be most ready to embrace the divine appointments. So, on your next journey, anticipate the hectic, difficult times with joy and enthusiasm. God has something extra special planned. Have a nice trip!
“By their fruit you will recognize them.” Matthew 7:16a NIV
“My brothers and sisters, can a fig tree bear olives, or a grapevine bear figs? Neither can a salt spring produce fresh water.” James 3:12 NIV