Galatians 5:22—”But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 5:23
meekness, self-control; against such there is no law.”
What does fruit mean?
The fruit of trees, vines, that which originates or comes from something, an effect, result, work, act or deed.
When we think of self-control, we usually rely on our strength or self-discipline to control ourselves. However, self-control is mentioned as a fruit of the Spirit not a fruit of our strength to control ourselves.
Jesus said He did nothing on His own initiatives but relied on His Father for everything.
John 15:4—”Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. 15:5–I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing.”
Apart from Him we cannot produce the fruit of self-control. Oh, we often try to muster up the inner strength to control our selves. When we abide in Him, we will see the fruit of His Spirit, the fruit of self-control.
Abide—to remain as one, not to become another or different, dwell.
To abide in Him is to trust Him, to trust He lives in us and that we are one with Him. Rather than developing a rehab plan for our lack of self-control, He is calling us into oneness with Him. We can produce a lot of human initiative fruit that may look shiny and even healthy but will eventually wither.
When we start searching ourselves, we will shine a light on many weaknesses resulting in well intentioned strategies to fix or convert those weaknesses into strengths and more self-control. This becomes a fruit of our labor rather than a fruit of the Spirit. He spoke a word to me many years ago, “Stop searching yourself.” This remains one of my weaknesses. In writing this blog He is reminding me, again, to abide in Him and He will produce the fruit of His Spirit which includes self-control. Sit, in the back seat and let Him do the driving. Let go and let God.
Lord, draw us unto You, teach us to abide in You and let You live through us. We trust You for the fruit of self-control.