Bearing the fruit of the Spirit in your life is important, but a question immediately arises: How do you begin to walk this road? It is one thing to read Galatians 5:22–23 and agree with it; it is quite another to know how to apply it.
Sometimes it’s hard to be a Christian because life interferes. It happens when life gets busy, weather or accidents happen, and we get so busy dealing with the day-to-day activities that it seems God gets pushed back into second place.
Two nights ago, the storm passed though here where I live. It hit about 3:30 am. Many people slept thru it, but some of our complex lost electricity. Many of us who lost electricity were awaken by the events. In my case, it was medical equipment that stopped working, thus waking me.
I walked outside several times in the storm during lulls, and checked on my neighbors. One lady is 93, and she was outside with her flashlight trying to see what was happening. The storm didn’t cause any damage other than knocking out electricity and Cable TV.
However, this event made me realize that although I know many people who live around me, I really don’t know them. I got to wondering who, if any were put in danger when medical equipment failed. In my case, I was not in any immediate health danger, and in fact have backup for just such electric failure. However many others don’t. Just ask my son-in-law who is a paramedic. During the severe ice storm a couple of years ago, he responded to numerous calls from people whose oxygen machines failed during power outages putting them in crisis.
My thoughts began to turn from medical needs to salvation needs. Just as I know very little about my neighbor’s medical needs during an emergency, I realized I have not been very faithful to the Gospel in finding out their spiritual needs. I am called upon most every time we have a community meeting to lead prayer or blessing before the community meal. So I have a reputation, if that’s the correct term. But I have not established the personal connections needed to investigate spiritual needs.
I have allowed the business of life to take first place. Fortunately God is not going to take away our salvation if we fail to meet all of His expectations, but I suggest that we do make Him unhappy when we fail to meet His expectations, one of which is become more familiar with Him. Our goal as Christians always must be to become more intimate with Him as we help others grow.
Christians should spend time each day connected to God. We can block off time on our calendars if we need that much discipline to focus on God. Frankly, time demands for most of us naturally interfere with what we might otherwise consider not essential each day. Spending time with God is, in fact, essential for spiritual growth.
Living a spiritual life must include more than simply doing spiritual things. It must go beyond self-discipline and spiritual exercises because true spirituality isn’t something you “do.” Instead, to live a truly spiritual life, you engage the One who created you to be a spiritual being. You have to get to know your Father, and that means knowing His ways.
You and I dwell in the midst of an invisible spiritual system that is constantly at work, moving and shifting all around us. As you recognize the reality of this system, your spiritual growth will greatly accelerate. Understanding God’s ways is vital if you truly desire to become spiritual. When you do not understand the ways of God, you will often find yourself fighting against the very thing God desires to accomplish.
So the key to living a spiritual life and seeing the fruit of the Spirit manifested in your heart is this: You understand God’s ways.
Sometimes it takes storms in our life to cause us to refocus on our Spiritual life.