by Larry Burkett
"The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law" (Galatians 5:22-23).
The apostle Paul listed the fruit of the Spirit in Galatians, but I think the fruit that is most significant is the one he wrote about in 1 Corinthians 13: love.
We have all kinds of gifts-prophecy, evangelism, giving, speaking in tongues-but if they aren't based on love, they are ineffective. All those things are temporal and will pass away.
But love lasts forever, and one thing I pray for is that God would give me the ability to love more fully and much more deeply.
Some of my bad habits still haunt me from my secular life (remember I wasn't saved until I was 32 years old): irritation with people, driving too fast, and too much pride.
The only way to overcome ungodly characteristics is through love. Perfect love casts out not only fear but also anger, resentment, and pride.
All the fruit of the Spirit should be evident in our lives if we are going to be effective witnesses for the Lord. If you have love, all the other fruit will fall into place.
"Now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love" (1 Corinthians 13:13).
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