Lord's Day Liturgy

Quicker Than Tomatoes

Love. Joy. Peace. Patience. Kindness. Goodness. Faithfulness. Gentleness. Self-control. These are all attributes of one fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22-23). When should you expect the harvest?

Fruit, as we usually think about it, is not an immediate product; fruit takes time to ripen. Fruit is seasonal. Fruit starts as a seed, buried in the ground, watered and sunned and grown, and then, depending on what kind of plant or tree, the first harvest might be a few years away. At best, your tomato takes the whole summer.

The farmer must wait; no techniques or tips trump his need for patience. The Christian, though, does not wait like a farmer when it comes to the fruit of the Spirit. This isn’t to say that we don’t grow, it isn’t to say that the fruit doesn’t increase. But when the desires of the flesh get grabby, we don’t have to wait a few months for the Spirit to show up.

The Spirit already indwells every Christian (Ephesians 1:13). We do not replant a seed every time we’re tempted or see an obedience opportunity.

When it comes to the fruit of the Spirit, expect to find fulness on the vine every time you go into the field. When your brother irritates you, you don’t need him to go away, you need the Spirit of love. When your burdens weigh you down, you don’t need time to pass, you need the Spirit of joy. When your future alarms you, you need the Spirit of peace.

Spiritual fruit is not about waiting for, but walking in the Spirit (Galatians 5:16).