But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.Patience: Something those working in ministry really need. :)
As I started doing a little reading about the 5th chapter of Galatians, I found it interesting that the commentaries said that Paul is talking about a singular fruit. Rather than talking about character qualities of individuals, he’s talking about the way in which the Spirit’s work is made manifest in community. The commentary said he’s talking about the peaceful and community-building character of the Sprit’s work.
First a couple of definitions of patience:
One commentary said patience is the opposite of “fits of rage” or short temper. It’s the quality of staying with people even when constantly wronged and irritated by them.
Another source said patience is the quality of being long-suffering toward those whose conduct may in fact be calculated to provoke anger.
How often have we had to bite our tongues when someone has said something bad about our husband? Or about us?!
Patience—not a fit of rage. That quality of long-suffering toward those who wrong you.
I couldn’t do that without the Holy Spirit.
Though most of the time, everything goes smoothly and those around us are wonderful, sometimes it’s hard to be in the position we’re in. Even within the church, people can be hurtful. Even if they’re good-intentioned, they can still say things that hurt. And don’t we also let people down sometimes? Maybe we don’t hold our tongues and hurt others. And what about when we’re new and don’t do things the way they’ve always been done? Or when we make changes that leave people feeling unsettled. Not to mention, within the community of faith, there are always going to be personality conflicts.
But God wants our community to have a spirit of patience with each other.
We’re able to handle it with God’s help. The fruit of the spirit is moral character, played out in our church, and developed by the power of the Spirit.
I’ll be giving away a signed copy of A Family for Faith today in a drawing from among those who leave a comment. What fruit of the Spirit has God been working on in your life?
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Missy Tippens is a pastor’s wife and mom of three who lives near Atlanta. After ten years of pursuing her dream, she made her first sale of a full-length novel to Love Inspired in 2007. She still pinches herself to see if it really happened! Her novels have been finalists in the American Christian Fiction Writers Book of the Year Contest, the Gayle Wilson Award of Excellence and the Bookseller's Best Award. Her most recent release from Love Inspired is A Family for Faith. The next, A House Full of Hope, will be out in February 2012.
You can find Missy at http://www.missytippens.com/
ABOUT THE BOOK - A Family for Faith
When Faith Hagin sees widower cop Gabe Reynolds every day in her coffee shop, she can’t help but feel for the struggling single dad. She’s raised a teenager of her own—and sadly, knows what not to do. But thanks to his matchmaking preteen daughter, Chelsea, the whole town’s praying for Gabe to find a wife!
Even though Faith thinks she’s content being just friends, spending time with him and Chelsea starts to feel like a fresh start at having a family. And their love may be the answer to everyone’s prayers.