"But when the Holy Spirit controls our lives He will produce this kind of fruit in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self- control" (Galatians 5:22,23).
One of my dear friends had a 25-year old son who had never grown past the baby stage mentally or physically. He had greeted the birth of his beautiful baby boy with great joy, but his joy turned to heartache and sorrow with the passing years as his son never matured.
Unfortunately and tragically, many Christians never pass the baby or childhood stages. Think of the heartache and sorrow that God experiences when He looks upon those of His children who have never matured, though they have been Christians for many years.
Martha, a new Christian, approached me with this question, "With all my heart I want to be a woman of God, but I do not experience the consistency of Galatians 5:22,23 in my life. What is wrong?"
Maybe you are asking the same question, if so, it will be helpful for you to understand that the Christian life is a life of growth. Just as in our physical lives we begin as babies and progress through childhood into adolescence, young adulthood and mature adulthood, so it is in our spiritual lives.
The Holy Spirit takes up residence within every believer at the moment of new birth. The growth process is greatly accelerated when a believer consciously yields himself to the lordship of Christ and the filling and control of the Holy Spirit. A believer who is empowered by the Holy Spirit and is a faithful student of God's Word, who has learned to trust and obey God, can pass through the various stages of spiritual growth and become a mature Christian within a brief period of time. Some Spirit-filled Christians demonstrate more of the fruit of the Spirit within one year than others who have been untaught, uncommitted believers for 50 years.
TODAY'S ACTION POINT: I am determined that I will become a spiritually mature Christian, in whose life the fruit of the Spirit will be demonstrated. Through the enabling of the Holy Spirit I will dedicate myself to prayer, reading the Word and witnessing, and living a life of obedience.
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