But after I had taken that step and was buried in the watery grave of baptism, I had for the first time true peace. It is rearing our children to be Christians and to love God. - is to do the work of Christ. And you can't have peace without kindness, goodness, and faithfulness. But don't be cold, hard, and brutal either. Be patient. Goodness and kindness has a way of softening even the hardest heart. To want what is best for them, to pray for them, and to forgive them for their transgressions. We have just touched on these.Jesus said, "Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. To love them is to bring them to Christ.But still, faithfulness is more. It is that sense of belonging when we consider that we are a child of God - we are His child.JoyChristian joy is not the excitement we feel when we purchase a new car or accomplish some difficult task. Jesus said, "Do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you. To be able to share Christ with these lovely people and to show kindness to them by visiting with them and holding their hand is a true blessing for me. "I tell it just the way it is!" I had someone tell me that one day.
To give to those who have hurt us in some manner, regardless of how severe that hurt, true Christian love and compassion. When sharing Christ with a non-believer many times patience is required. Loving Christ is keeping His commandments. Don't lie." Faithfulness is loving Christ. Faithfulness is much more than occupying a seat in a pew on Sunday morning. Gentleness is caring about others' feelings. But love is also a part of us, if we are a Christian." (Colossians 3:12,13) Kindness shown to a brother or sister in Christ and those outside of Christ is perhaps the most beautiful part of being a Christian. They always ask for prayer and are so appreciative of the kindness we are able to show them. It is being there to help those in need and to share Christ with those who have not made Him their Lord and Savior. You can't have "one without the others", so to speak. Study them and have them in your life. To do good deeds - to help others in need, to serve the local congregation, to help a neighbor, visit the sick, etc. We are called upon to exhibit patience in many ways.God's love for us is unconditional and undeserved. All the thoughts and feelings of joy we can have here on earth will be multiplied thousands and thousands of time in Heaven. I have colleagues who say, "I can't believe the patience you have. It is avoiding the pit-falls of smoking, drinking, and riotous living. In my job as an administrator in public education, there are many trials I must endure. The fruit of the Spirit is what being a Christian is all about. It is being disciplined enough to be faithful and using our talents for God. They obviously come as a group. You may be surprised when you do something good to help someone whom you think (and perhaps they really do) hate you.Cutting words, no matter how truthful, is not of God.Peace I don't know about you, but after I came to know what the Word of God had to say about the future of those who do not accept Christ, I had a lot of fear in my life. Your efforts will pay off. Or, in most cases, they will just not allow you to penetrate the wall of indifference they have erected around themselves. We will not only have love for the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit; but we will also love our brothers and sisters in Christ. Love has provided for us God's Word so we may know how to live a Christian life. Therefore, if we are to have in us Love, it will also be unconditional and unmerited upon those whom we show Christian love. They will try to twist what you say to mean something else. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. It is not the rush we get when a perceived danger is past. It will be a pure love not dependant upon the favor of the persons whom we love.For sure, faithfulness is "being there" to worship God; not only on Sunday morning, but as often as we can. Our Heavenly Father to watch over us, His Son to intercede for us, and the Holy Spirit to guide us." It is the understanding that God, His Son, and the Holy Spirit are there for us. And we should not keep our goodness to ourselves and our brothers and sisters in Christ." (John 14:27)I think the song writer says it very well; "There's a quiet understanding. Faithfulness is also being faithful in our giving to further the Lord's kingdom in our communities and around the world. I gently responded, "You tell it the way you think it is, but that does not make it true.Joy comes from God. Keep trying to reach them for Christ. Some people have a way of being brutally truthful and thinking that it is a virtue.
This is perhaps the true test of Christian love. And it is not the happiness we feel as we plan an interesting and exciting vacation. It is that quiet sense of well-being we have as we lay our heads down on the pillow at night knowing that God will watch over us. They are deceived! Let us not be deceived. I know there are those who sit in church every Sunday morning thinking that being there is all they must do to show their faithfulness. How do you do it?" Actually it is not me that does it, but rather the guidance of the Holy Spirit that makes it possible. It took me several weeks to muster the courage to take that first step for Christ.LongsufferingLongsuffering (or patience) is also the mark of a true Christian.LoveGod is love! His love caused Him to create us and all the universe. It is making wise choices about our lives. It caused Him to provide for us a Savior in the person of Jesus Christ. As an elder in my local congregation, I have the good fortune to be able to go out into the community on the Lord's Day and serve communion to the folks that are home-bound or in nursing homes. To know that we have a Father who loves us so much that He sent His only Son to die on the cross for us, joy is that realization. It is being faithful to meet around the Lord's Table each and every Lord's Day as did the early church. Keeping His commandments is following His word to the best of our abilities - to the BEST of our abilities! GentlenessIt always amazes me how someone who claims Christ as the Lord of their life can be so cold and matter of fact in dealing with others. In John 14:15 Jesus said it all concerning faithfulness, "If you love Me, keep My commandments.
With this "quiet understanding," we can truly have peace in our lives. We are not talking about "fruits" of which you may pick and choose the ones you want to have." (Matthew 5:44) Spread the goodness around. And finally joy is a taste of Heaven, but only a taste.And we will love even our enemies - or those we perceive to be our enemies. We must be compassionate with those who do not know Christ and strive to win them for the Lord. It is keeping our personal finances under control. They will not have to earn it, it will simply be there. It is being faithful to study the Word of God daily, and to pray each day. You can't have love without joy, peace, and patience. Heaven will be full of joy.We will love those outside of Christ - the Wholesale Double Poster Stand Factory sinner.Kindness"Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humbleness of mind, meekness, longsuffering; bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do." Being gentle in our words to others is very important if we are to let the Spirit bear fruit in our lives.So, what exactly is each element of the fruit of the Spirit? Notice first that the word fruit in Galatians 5:22 is singular - not plural.FaithfulnessHow could we even begin to think about being a true Christian and not be faithful.Self-controlSelf-control is not merely keeping our tongue under control. GoodnessWe are "ambassadors for Christ" (2 Corinthians 5:20) while we are on this earth. As such, it is our desire to do goodness as we see the need. You either have them all, or you have none