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.
Galatians 5:22-23 NIV
Oh, how I love this scripture, sisters! We looked at it when discussing our “beauty regimen” in chapter 2 and now, as we revisit it, we see those “fruits” are also the proof of the Holy Spirit living and working in you! (But first, let’s get back to Esther….)
Things are FINALLY looking up for her, Mordecai, and the Jews! Haman is gone, Mordecai and Esther have been redeemed and in verses 7-8 we see that the estate of Haman has been given to Esther. Moreover, another decree is now being written in the King’s name on behalf of the Jews which not only allowed the Jews to protect themselves, but also to destroy anyone that attacked them AND plunder the property of their enemies. This decree we see is sealed with the King’s signet ring and signifies the irrevocable nature of the new decree. Hooray!
Darlene then compares this seal to the seal, or mark, of the Holy Spirit, which is given to us when we become a child of God. Let’s look at the Scripture she provides: 2 Corinthians 1:21-22.
Now it is God who makes both us and you stand firm in Christ. He anointed us, set His seal of ownership on us, and put His Spirit in our hearts as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come. (NIV)
My Study Bible gives this further explanation regarding the seal of ownership: “It was both the first installment on a loan and a guarantee of its complete payment” (Quest Study Bible). So if the Holy Spirit is a deposit and a guarantee of future payment – how amazing will the payoff be?? How exciting!!
The Holy Spirit is vital to your life as a believer! Darlene provides a sampler of Scriptures to discuss the role He plays in our lives. We see:
- that He is a counselor (John 14:16)
- that He will convict the world in regard to sin, righteousness, and judgment (John 16:7-11)
- that He is a guide into all truth (John 16:13)
- that He glorifies Jesus (John 16:14)
- and He testifies about Jesus (John15:26)
Think of the Holy Spirit as the ultimate Guide to help you navigate your way in this life and help you enter Heaven with as many rewards as possible! In fact, different versions of the Bible will translate “Counselor” in John 16:7 as “Advocate” or “Helper.” (For an incredible, in-depth study of the Holy Spirit and His role in your life, may I recommend “The Helper” by Catherine Marshall.) But just like Jesus, the Holy Spirit will not work in your life against your will. We must choose to cooperate with the Holy Spirit. Example: My GPS will give me the correct directions to reach my destination, but if I don’t turn it on, or if I ignore its instructions, it can’t help me!
How do we know if the Holy Spirit is guiding us down the right path? How do we know that He’s working? Well, that brings us back to Galatians 5:22-23, the first Scripture mentioned today. When you see a tree, you know what kind of tree it is because of the fruit that is hanging from it. Likewise the “fruits of the Spirit” are evidences that can be seen in our lives that we are allowing the Holy Spirit to work in us. The more we allow the Spirit to shape our lives, change our thinking, and mold our behavior, the greater the evidence – the greater the harvest of fruit!
So…. How are YOU doing?? I’d love to know! Is there a fruit that is your favorite? And which one do you need to cultivate more often in order for it to grow in your life?
Heavenly Father – You are a kind and gracious God! Thank You for redeeming us from our enemies. Thank You for sealing us as Your children and giving us the Holy Spirit, not only as a promise for the future, but to help us in the present! I ask You to help me listen to the guidance that Your Spirit longs to give me and help me to blossom into a beautiful, fruit-filled tree for all to see! Thank You for Your blessings, Your goodness, Your grace and Your love. May I be able to show those qualities to someone who needs them today. In Your Son’s name we pray.