How is the Flow of the Spirit in your Church and Leaders?

We are also duty-bound to be diligent in taking and receiving His flow of the Spirit, not for our salvation, but to grow in life and ministry. These benefits are the reasons we are given this precious opportunity to have the Fruit of the Spirit. God’s love working in us needs to be known and then applied to be effective and real to us and to those around us. If we know them and then do nothing with them, they are as useless as having health insurance but not using it when you get sick. The same is true with trying to apply a Fruit without understanding what it is and how it is to be used. We would be inflicted with an imitation or a skewed and perhaps even rotten fruit as His marvelous fruit would go unnoticed and unused. It is like never filling out the forms and starting the benefits. Not knowing God’s precepts means we would not be able to apply them, because what we are applying is not of Him!

We have both privileges and responsibilities in our Lord. God has given us gifts, abilities, and promises that we are not to store when needed. When they are needed, they are for us to persistently use!

Such benefits given will not only profit us in our intimate relationship to Christ, but also empower us to build much heartier relationships with others, too. So, do not be shortsighted concerning your faith and the opportunities Christ has and will still bring. If we do not have a desire to pursue the will of God, we have to ask ourselves why? and what is in the way? Most, if not all of the time, it is the desire of sin that blocks us. Sometimes we may not recognize sin and rather rationalize it away. This happens especially when our view of Christ and/or our involvement in discipleship is ignored or “dumbed down.” We seek things that tickle our ears but that require no due diligence on our part. Our election is proven by our obedience and growth in Christ!

This is the willingness to live out the Christian life we claim we are living. It is the actual implementation of His precepts into our daily lives, because these precepts are better than anything we could have planned on our own.

We must have a life that matches what we say we believe; faith is the quintessential tool to make this happen both individually and collectively with one another in a church. This is where we take what we have learned and believe and put it into action in our relationships and opportunities. The practice of the Fruit of the Spirit means that our faith and our deeds do not operate independently of each other. To make this happen further, we must have a mind that is focused, to the best of our ability, on God’s precepts and character. Instead of filling our mind with needless junk, let us fill it up with things that will help us grow in our faith. Instead of a romance novel or a cheap magazine, pick up a good book, a classic, a book to help you grow; read the ultimate Book, His Word, the Bible. If you are willing to grow closer to God, then fill your mind with things and ideas that are pleasing to Him (Psalm 34:4-6; Rom. 12:1-3; 1 Cor. 2:16; James 2:18; 1 Peter 2:1-2).

How Fruitful is your Church and Leaders?

 

A lack of Fruit is what Christ was so concerned about with the leaders of His day (just read Matthew 23) and why He spoke so much about this and that the coming judgment for our actions and responsibility. We will be held accountable as followers and especially as leaders; thus, we have to know what we are called to do. It starts with knowing Christ and then learning how He wants us to operate. Saved? Yes!

To say this another way, as the Book of James asks us, what good is our faith if we misuse it or do nothing with it?

Galatians, chapter five, gives us a key template to the Christian life and how to do ministry. And guess what; the churches that are Fruitful—as in the out flowing of the Fruit of the Spirit—are the ones that grow more, not only in numbers, but in faith and things that matter to our Lord! Just look how we will be judged in the eternity to come; our reward will not depend on how well and how often we exercised our gifts, but how well we produced the crop of effectual Fruit. Yes, the gifts and jobs of ministry are important; but the Fruit is the essential essence of our call. This is what is fundamental and indispensable for a capable leader and for an effective church!

We are Called to Emulate Christian Virtues!

The sad fact is that the average Christian does not make the Fruit of the Spirit a priority in his/her life; this should cause us intense concern. And, even worse off are our leaders! This is why I believe we have so many thorn-bush churches and few fruit-stand churches. I am not saying those who do not practice the Fruit are not saved, because it is not for me or anyone to judge salvation; nevertheless, we should be deeply disturbed by this, for we are known by our Fruit! And, if there is no effective Fruit displayed from a person who claims Christ as Lord, then that person is detached from the nutrients of the Vine (John 15)! If your church is not displaying love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control, the question becomes, “is Christ there?” The evidence says “no,” or at the very least “knocking at the door trying to get in!”