Fruit of the Spirit — Faithfulness
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Paul writes about the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians 5:22-23: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
Under the right circumstances, these are all traits that a person could easily demonstrate. If someone is kind to you, it’s easy to return their kindness with kindness. But about when there are rumors of layoffs, bills due, and food to provide? Is peace about your financial situation your first response?
Expressing these traits is not easy when we face trials. In fact, they are usually the antithesis of how we truly respond. The fruit of our fleshy desires is hatred, sorrow, anxiety, impatience, animosity, cruelty, disloyalty, hardness, and rashness.
When put in a difficult situation, what does it mean to show faithfulness? How does one remain faithful? Being faithful means remaining loyal or steadfast. You hold to what you believe and are unchanged by outside circumstances.
Hebrews 11 gives a great definition of faithfulness and reminds the reader of the heroes of the faith of Old Testament times.
“Faith shows the reality of what we hope for; it is the evidence of things we cannot see. Through their faith, the people in days of old earned a good reputation. By faith we understand that the entire universe was formed at God’s command, that what we now see did not come from anything that can be seen” (Hebrews 11:1-3 NLT).
Take some time to read Hebrews 11 and take note that every single person mentioned trusted that God would fulfill His promises. This type of faithfulness is the result of their relationship with God. It is His Spirit that gave them the strength to put their trust fully and completely in God, even when running away seemed like a good idea or the world offered an easier option. Despite their circumstances, they put their trust in God and who God says He is.
We can all agree that demonstrating the fruit of the Spirit over the fruit of the flesh is more desirable in the long run. So, if it’s part of our sinful human nature to respond negatively, how do we respond with the fruit of the Spirit?
This fruit is produced in our lives only through the Holy Spirit. We don’t possess these godly traits on our own. They are a direct reflection and result of our relationship with Jesus Christ.
Therefore, we must have a saving faith in Jesus as our Lord and Savior to have the Holy Spirit’s power working within us!
As believers, we must ask the Spirit to guide us and to provide the strength needed to choose to exhibit His fruit over the sinful ways of man. We do this by spending time in prayer with Him, reading God’s Word, and meditating on things that are good (good being things of God, His will, His Word, etc.).
When faced with adversity, step away from the situation and write down every time God has been faithful. Remind yourself of how God saved you from your sin and provides eternal life through Jesus Christ. Remind yourself of how God has never been wrong, never been cruel, never been absent. He is always present and always available.
Ask the Holy Spirit to bring these truths to your mind when you’re facing difficulties. Ask Him to remind you that God is faithful. Ask Him to help you respond with faithfulness in all circumstances.
When we ask the Spirit for His help, He will give us the strength and ability to do all things that align with God’s will—and it is always God’s will that we demonstrate the fruit of the Spirit because they represent God’s power working in us.
Ways to Be Reminded of God’s Faithfulness
- If you do not know Jesus as your Lord and Savior, we invite you to learn more about Him here (https://www2.cbn.com/faith/who-is-jesus). It is only through a transforming relationship with Him that you can truly demonstrate the fruits of the Spirit.
- Write down five ways you’ve seen God’s faithfulness in Scripture. Ask the Spirit to bring these stories to your mind when God’s people felt hopeless or scared, and be reminded of how God redeemed the situation.
- Write down five ways you’ve seen God’s faithful in your own life. Ask the Spirit to bring these accounts to your mind. Let Him remind you of situations that you were in, whether it was a period of sickness, fear, or anxiety. How did God bring you through this situation?
- Ask the Holy Spirit to help you demonstrate faithfulness. Ask Him to give you the ability to wholeheartedly and bravely trust God with every aspect of your life. Ask Him to help you overcome the struggles that keep you from fully trusting God in these situations.
When we read God’s Word, we see God’s faithfulness to His people from the beginning of time. Let’s allow what God says about Himself in Exodus 34:6 to be a reminder of His character, “The Lord passed in front of Moses, calling out, “Yahweh! The Lord! The God of compassion and mercy! I am slow to anger and filled with unfailing love and faithfulness.”
The believer’s confidence grows when we understand who God is and that He will continue to be faithful for all of eternity. God will never leave us nor forsake us. When you feel uncertain and want to take control rather than trust God, meditate on this biblical truth of Romans 8:28, “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.”
Scripture is quoted from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996, 2004, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.
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