Monday, May 4, 2009

“Spirit in Bloom,” By Kelli Zaniel

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control,” Galations 5:13-26. If our desire is to possess these qualities, then we know we are being lead by the Holy Spirit. The Spirit produces these character traits that are found in the nature of Christ. The Bible teaches that, they are the by-products of Christ’s control. The fruit of the Spirit is not what we do but WHO WE ARE. When we have these Christ-like qualities, we are transformed into God’s personal flashlight. We become a dazzling beacon of light that radiates from within, illuminating the world around us.

The only way we can procure these “fruit of the Spirit,” characteristics is through the presence of the Holy Spirit residing in our hearts, souls and minds. In order to be guided by the Spirit, we need the following ingredients: a heart that is open to the call of the Lord and a heart that listens and can discern between our earthly desires versus God’s promptings. A heart that knows Him personally and intimately as God the lover of my soul, the omniscient God and the mighty, all-powerful God. These ingredients combined and stirred together produce the sweet emergence of the Christian character.

My daughter, Savanna Faith, recently brought home a “fruit of the Spirit,” seed from church. She was instructed to gather the seeds, plant them in fertile soil and water them so that the seedlings would thrive and burst into leaves. Once the process had begun, the delicate little seeds began to flourish. Their dainty shoots began to burst and blossom into maturing flowers. A few weeks later, it was obvious the seedlings were not reaching their fullest potential. Savanna noticed that the tiny plants were no longer growing because they were not absorbing enough sunlight. Now in survival mode, the frail yet determined stems began to twist, turn and bend toward the light. Once the plants were relocated to a new home, a place where they could truly experience a direct relationship with the warm and glowing sun, they began to “burst forth and flourish,” once again.

We, like Savanna’s seedlings, must be firmly pressed and planted into enriched soil made up of bible studies, godly relationships and our church family, so that our spiritual life will be continually sprinkled with the daily nourishment of God’s Word. We must fertilize and spray the seedlings of our hearts with daily prayer, encouragement through the Holy Spirit and God filled messages. We must physically, mentally and spiritually bend and twist ourselves out of the darkness of our sinful nature towards God’s heavenly and forgiving garden of light. Once the glow of the Holy Spirit has showered down on us, we can truly soak ourselves in all His life-giving glory. If we do these things, our foundation will be strong enough to thrive amidst the neglect of a fallen world. We may even have the honor of sharing our fruit with others who are eternally hungry. We will then notice that, like Savanna’s fruit of the Spirit seedlings, we will burst and blossom into the abundant fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

"Happy are the people who know the joyful shout; LORD, they walk in the light of your presence. They rejoice in Your name all day long, and they are exalted in Your righteousness" (Ps. 89:15-16).
Acknowledge Him; Seek His presence by calling on Him; and Praise His name!

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