Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Kindness - Day 2a - God is GOOD

Big questions today. My search to learn how God defines "kindness" led me to learn more about the fruit of the Spirit. This is what I've learned.

This is what the Life Application Bible (NIV) says about the fruit of the Spirit:

Commentary on Galatians 5:22-23 The fruit of the Spirit is the spontaneous work of the Holy Spirit in us. The Spirit produces these character traits that are found in the nature of Christ. They are the by-products of Christ's control - we can't obtain them by trying to get them without his help. If we want the fruit of the Spirit to grow in us we must join our lives to his (see John 15:4-5). We must know him, love him, remember him, and imitate him. As a result, we will fulfill the intended purpose of the law - to love God and our neighbors. Which of these qualities do you want the Spirit to produce in you?

So basically I can't make myself be kind by sheer force. I have to let the Spirit guide me to be kind. That's hard. HARD. What about when I want to scream and yell and be downright unpleasant? I'm supposed to push those desires aside and let the Spirit guide me to kindness.

John 15:4-5 -Remain in me, and I will remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.

This Scripture seems to be following me around lately. Clearly God wants me to pay attention. This is not going to be easy, is it?

So, remember the friend issue I told mentioned? Amen to being able to discuss it with kind words and from my heart. I didn't yell. I didn't cry. We'll see how things settle, but I'm pleased and I'm thankful. "Kindness" is the word of the week.

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