2 Words in 1
For the Fruit of the Spirit
One of the most difficult things for a person to accept, is to realize that many who taught you, did not even believe it themselves. I often go back and listen to a renown minister speak on things he’s been traveling all over the country, even other parts of the world, preaching and teaching. Many of the things he preached and prophesied, have come to pass in my own life. People scoffed at what he ministered to us. Oh, you can be sure, they did not do it openly; they were likely in there jumping up and down like the rest of us. But they didn’t take it home with them.
Some of us asked things from God; we got it. We might not have been in a place to use it, but we still got it. There are certain signs that follow them that believe; and there are signs that follow those who do not believe.
I heard this minister talking to a group about some things that Paul wrote to Timothy. In one place, he said for him, not to neglect the gift that was in him. In the second letter, he told him to “stir it up.” He reminded Timothy, that this gift was given to him through prophecy. It was also in him by Paul laying hands on him and also by the presbytery laying hands on him. I saw this acted out in some of the meetings I attended back in the day now.
I remember this apostle/evangelist praying, that something would get ahold of us in those meetings; and we would be changed forever. To those who went there desperately hungry, something did get ahold of us, and we have never been the same since. It doesn’t go away; it’s always there. It became clear in those days, that many did not believe that the gifts of God are not revocable. They scoffed at that; and many still are. Many people scoffed when we young ministers got back to our home/local churches. It was not accepted, that the Spirit would give gifts to some and not to others. There were those who attempted to allow the full operation of the Spirit; but there was an issue of power, and trying to control what He wanted to do.
I do not believe, that those gifts were given to men and women, not to ever be used. God is so much wiser than man; His plans have always been above what men could ever understand or figure out.
To those to whom these gifts have been imparted, only God knew the season. We were led to believe, by the same scoffers, that these things could only be used within their four walls.
One minister on Facebook once wrote, that we were pushed out of those walls, for a reason. Yes, God allowed those same scoffers to hurt us and force us out; but it was all in His plan. I do think, that God is going to use these gifts, and those who have them, in any place He can. Some doors will open, that have so far been shut.
The Spirit is not waiting on tradition and men, to make up their mind about these things. If there are more hungry people in the street, than there are in some building, then that is where the Spirit is going. Those gifted, are hearing a call; it’s not coming from men; it is coming from the Ancient of Days.
We’re on God’s time clock; actually, we always were. I don’t think the Spirit is going to allow any of those called vessels, to neglect what they have been given; not when He was the one that planted it there. These chosen vessels, will feel the need to stir, what was already put there. It’s quite likely, that they will come from all walks of life; from every cave and byway that they have been in.
Let the scoffers scoff. Keep listening and keep watching. The Spirit will lead; we will remember, how to follow.
For the Fruit of the Spirit
“…For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness, and righteousness, and truth” Ephesians 5:9 . .
It seems that many people think they are good, and they feel they are righteous, and they say they have the truth. You can turn this verse several ways around and turn it upside down if you want, but it is going to mean the same thing. You can’t have goodness, without the fruit of the Spirit; because goodness IS a fruit of the Spirit. And you certainly cannot be righteous either, without the fruit of the Spirit. You also can’t possibly have all the truth, without manifesting the fruit that goes with it.
This fruit, we are talking about, comes in one package; it’s not that you can have one or two, and not manifest the others. Years ago, it was explained to me; like a bunch of bananas, or a cluster of grapes; it’s all the same fruit. We cannot claim goodness, if we don’t have meekness and gentleness to go along with it.
No one of us is perfect; there was only one perfect One that ever walked this earth; and that was Jesus Christ. We do strive for perfection; but it’s quite likely, that none of us are going to manifest all of the fruit, all of the time. But one thing is clear; it should be most of the time; if we are living and walking after the Spirit. If we are not continually seeking after the Spirit and trying to follow His lead, that will be manifested in us.
We who have said that we are called by His name, can’t somehow tolerate the idea, that our spirit has driven people away at times. If we had truly been manifesting the characteristics of the Spirit and not our own spirit, that likely would not have happened.
Most of us have been taught, what self-righteousness looks like to God. I wonder if it ever occurred to us, that it looks the same, to people who aren’t even in the church. And in the fear of sounding too conceited or “puffed up,” it has often looked the same, to those who were genuinely trying to follow the Spirit, and walk therein.
I’m not throwing darts or attempting to put people down; God knows, there has already been enough of that. But some of us, who think we have so much truth, and think we are the only ones right, have come to have a reputation, of being arrogant, condemning and judgmental. We have often had a haughty attitude in assuming, that others did not like us, because they did not want God or live the way they were supposed to live. If we had cared enough to listen, we might have learned, it was OUR spirit that often offended them the most. They in turn, had judged us by our own fruit.
Why is this message important today; in this very hour? It’s because, it is only by the Fruit of the Spirit, that people are going to know what we really are.
It will not matter what you call yourself, what name you have over the door, or what you say your doctrine and beliefs are. If we do not genuinely manifest the things that truly mark someone who is born-again, no one will be interested in anything we have to say. In the days ahead, people are going to need a refuge. They will be searching for those who have the answers, and the real Spirit to back it up.
Meek folk, do not try to promote themselves. Real love, does not condemn, judge harshly and does not speak arrogantly. Works of the flesh, will produce a different kind of fruit.