The Fruit of the Spirit
As a young mom, I had the opportunity to teach my daughters at home. During one of our bible studies, I came across a teaching about how the Holy Spirit provided and gifted us with nine fruit in which to live our lives. It occurred to us that we were leaving messages all over the place that were not aligned with this teaching.
We began to use all nine of them as a litmus test with our speech.
If individuals were to consistently apply the nine fruit of the Spirit from Galatians 5:22-23—Love, Joy, Peace, Patience, Kindness, Goodness, Faithfulness, Gentleness, and Self-Control—before speaking, the world would likely undergo a profound transformation in the way people communicate and relate to one another.
Words spoken out of love would seek the well-being of others. Instead of tearing down, speech would aim to build up and affirm.
Positivity and optimism would characterize conversations. People would be more inclined to share uplifting and encouraging words.
Conflicts would be approached with a desire for resolution rather than escalation. Speech would be a tool for reconciliation rather than division.
Impulsive and hasty words would be replaced with thoughtful and measured responses. People would be more willing to listen and understand before expressing their own thoughts.
Words would be chosen to reflect compassion and empathy Criticism would be constructive rather than destructive.
Speech would align with moral and ethical standards. People would strive to communicate in ways that promote goodness and virtue.
Trust would be built through consistent and reliable communication. Words spoken would be a reflection of one's integrity and commitment.
Communication would be gentle and considerate, avoiding harshness. Disagreements would be approached with a softness that fosters understanding.
Words spoken in the heat of the moment would be replaced with a controlled and measured response. Impulses to say hurtful or damaging things would be curbed.
If these fruits were consistently applied, the world would experience a significant reduction in conflict, misunderstanding, and negativity.
Conversations would become opportunities for growth, understanding, and connection. Respectful and mindful communication contributes to stronger relationships, both on an individual and societal level.
Just imagine, the ripple effect of such positive communication could lead to a more harmonious and compassionate global community.
When speaking with my grandson yesterday, we spoke about this fruit, along with the acrostic T.H.I.N.K. Before we speak, measure our words against this thought process.
Is it True, is it Helpful, is it Inspiring, is it Necessary (and I will add, is it Necessary, right now?), is it Kind?
My childhood hero, Mr. Rogers (I grew up in Pittsburgh) stated, “Imagine what our neighborhoods would be like if each of us offered, as a matter of course, just one (1) kind word to another person.”
If we had to pick just one, the greatest is Love. It really does make the world go round!
Remember, what comes out, can't be put back in. Stop, drop, and think. Do an experiment. Apply the fruit to your speech and watch what happens. It just could make an everlasting difference in not only your life, but someone else's, too.
Leave One New Message to others. One that will cause a noticeable shift and make the world a better place.