Before you can bear the Fruit of the Holy Spirit, you need to define it first. Here’s an article that discusses the fruit of the Holy Spirit.
The fruit of the Holy Spirit is listed in Galatians 5:22-23. After enumerating the works of the flesh (verses 18-21), the Apostle Paul gave us a comprehensive list of what the Holy Spirit can do if we let it in us. Paul wanted to make a contrast between what our flesh and the Holy Spirit can do. Notice that our flesh is naturally inclined to do evil. However, once we receive the Holy Spirit, we can now have the Help that we need to survive our Christian walk.
Galatians 5:22-23 tells us, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.” Christ said that by our fruits, we will be known (Matthew 7:20). If we are truly a follower of Christ, we must bear these fruits. It must be clearly evident in our thoughts, words, and actions.
Therefore, you are a true and genuine Christian if you have love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Now, notice that the Apostle Paul used the word “fruit” – a singular word. Paul was telling us that we cannot just pick any of these aspects of the Holy Spirit and disregard the rest. We cannot say that it is okay that I am not patient as long as I am faithful. No, all of the aspects of the Holy Spirit’s fruit build on each other.
We must also realize that the fruit of the Holy Spirit is the very character of God. Christ instructed us to aim for perfection (Matthew 5:48). Of course, as long as we are in the flesh, we can never be perfect and blameless before God. Yet, God wants us to aim for perfection – to develop His very character. This is how God’s standard is!
We must work hard to develop the fruit of the Holy Spirit because only then we can truly become effective Christians.
We need to ask ourselves how much of the Holy Spirit’s fruit have I already developed? Have I grown to be more like God and less like me?
How much love do I have in me? Do I really love my neighbor as myself? Do I exhibit the very characteristics of love mentioned in I Corinthians 13?
Am I joyful? Does my happiness depend on the things that are happening to me? Am I joyful every time I fall into various trials (James 1:2)? Do I serve God and others with gladness (Psalm 100:2)?
Does peace reign in my heart? Does my peace come from loving God’s law (Psalms 119:165)? Do I have peace because I realize how I was justified through faith (Romans 5:1)?
Am I patient with my brothers and sisters or am I easily get offended and frustrated? Do I wait on God and for His will to be done in my life or am I too impatient that I want things to go my way?
Am I kind to one another? Do I have the disposition to see the kindness of others rather than their faults? Do I have mildness in my temper, calmness of spirit, and the nature to treat all with kindness and politeness?
Am I good to everyone and not just to those whom I consider friends? Do I actively look for opportunities to do good to others? Am I only good when people are good to me or do I rather overlook offenses?
Am I faithful? If Christ returns here on earth, will He find me faithful (Luke 18:8)? Am I faithful to God? Am I faithful to my promises and true to my words? Do other people see me as a trustworthy person?
Am I meek? Do I seek peace with men rather than getting even with them? Am I patient when people do me wrong? Do I get easily offended by small or great insults?
Do I have self-control? Can I bring my every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ (II Corinthians 10:5)? How much strength or ascendency do I have over my sinful and carnal desires? Do I easily give into temptation or do I have the power to overcome it?
These are just some of the questions you need to answer with all honesty. When we answer these questions, we must not compare ourselves to others. We need to evaluate ourselves and see how much fruit we have really bore. When we compare our present selves to ourselves a year ago, are we spiritually growing or dying?
As we examine ourselves, I hope we can see that we are casting away the works of the flesh and focus on bearing good fruit. We need to continually grow in the grace and knowledge of our Savior, Jesus Christ.