There is one specific Scripture for this lesson. We’ll start there.
Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.
Do you notice anything about some of these? I’ll point out a few: love, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness. Those are qualities that describe God. The fruit of the Spirit is God displaying Himself in us and through us.
A Christian is someone who has died to self and lives to God. “I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.” We want to identify with Christ, both in His crucifixion of sinful flesh and His resurrection of glorified life.
Self is selfish, not loving. Self is discouraged and depressed, not joyful. Self is worried and anxious, not patient. Self is mean, not kind. Self is sinful, not good. Self is untrustworthy, not faithful. Self is demanding, not gentle. Self is impulsive, not self-controlled.
Self is what we need to put to death. When you recognize any action, word, thought, or attitude that displays any of those, you confess it as sin. You then ask for forgiveness and repent, telling God you want it out of your life. Thank Him that He will cleanse you from all unrighteousness. Believe that He is cleaning the sin out of you.
1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
On the other hand, we can ask Him to be putting into our lives the fruit of the Spirit. This is a good verse to memorize. A little memory device is that there are three one-syllable words (love, joy, peace), three with two-syllables (patience, kindness, goodness), and three with three-syllables (faithfulness, gentleness, self-control).
You can make the choice to live in these things. Love is a choice. Self-control is a choice. Responding gently is a choice. Acting kindly is a choice. Patience is a choice. Peace is a choice, when you choose not to argue, complain, or worry. Being faithful is a choice when you decide to keep your word even when it’s hard. Even joy is a choice. You can choose to praise God and give thanks no matter how you feel, and stir yourself up remembering who God is in all His goodness and how He saved you and all He saved you from.
Ask God’s help in making the right choices and continue to ask for Him to put these fruits in your life. These fruits are the Holy Spirit displaying God’s life through your life. You can ask for the Holy Spirit and the gifts that He brings into our lives.
Luke 11:13 “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”
Matthew 7:7 (NLT) “Keep on asking, and you will receive what you ask for. Keep on seeking, and you will find. Keep on knocking, and the door will be opened to you.”
Lesson Point: When we are crucified with Christ, self is to be put to death, and the life of God is to shine in us, displaying the character of God.
Challenge Question: What fruit of the Spirit do you feel is the most lacking in your life? Ask God specifically to work that into your life. The next time a trial/trouble comes, look for ways to express that fruit of the Spirit, and see how God is answering your prayer.