It is common knowledge that fruit is good for us. For us to maintain a well-balanced diet it is recommended that we eat four servings of this food group daily. Weight loss coaches encourage us to replace the chips, cookies, and other less healthy snacks with an apple, orange, or berries. Studies show that certain fruits are helpful in preventing and minimizing the symptoms of certain ailments such as lemons for digestive tract issues and cherries for inflammatory pain relief.
While it is a proven fact that fruit is indeed good for our bodies, it doesn’t end there. Fruit is essential for our spirit as well. “How so?” you ask. Galatians 5:22-23(NIV) lists the fruit that should be a regular part of every Christian’s diet: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
We cannot purchase this fruit in a grocery store or a farmer’s market and although we can find just about everything at Wal-Mart, we won’t find it there either. The fruit that is spoken of in these Galatian verses, doesn’t come from outside of us but is produced in us by the Holy Spirit. The key word in the sentence above is produced. We aren’t born with the “fruit of the Spirit”; It begins to grow in us when we receive salvation and begin to live for Christ. As we continuously grow in our relationship with God, the fruit continuously grows within us.
When we are driving down the road and see the big yellow “M” we recognize that there’s a McDonald’s nearby. Unfortunately, or fortunately, depending on the situation, our kids recognize it too. When we see the swoosh symbol we know the shoes or garment is a Nike product. These logos do what they were designed to do, they make their brand easily identifiable. Likewise, when others see love, joy, peace and the other six fruits in us, they recognize us as followers of Christ.
Follow the recommended dietary allowance and get your daily four, but while you’re filling up on apples, bananas, and pears, don’t forget about the other fruit. Make sure you get these nine nutrients too: love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. The fruit that feeds our spirit.