This week we start getting to the Fruit of the Spirit that is a little more connected to the nitty gritty stuff of life. I can’t think of a single person who would not wish they were more patient. Our culture says that “patience is a virtue”, but what are we doing to build our patience? How is patience connected to struggle and suffering? What does the Bible have to say about it? And then finally, are there times when it is actually wrong to be patient and better to take action? Let us think about this as we grow together…
This week, we examine the Fruit of the Spirit that we call Peace. What is peace? How can we come to a place of peace when we are surrounded by pressure and division; violence and unrest? Is peace merely the absence of conflict, worry or tension? Is it more than just personal, but also extending to society and our larger world? What kind of peace does Jesus dream of for us when He says “Blessed are the peacemakers”? Let us keep joining together thoughtfully and prayerfully seeking to grow in this Fruit.
This week, we continue to explore the Fruit of the Spirit promised to us in the life of faith and we focus on JOY! We will think about how joy is worlds apart different from happiness, though both of which are lacking in our post-pandemic world. Yet we are called, no matter the circumstance, to be a joy-full people! How do we do that? What does that look like? What difference does it make? And finally, how is joy connected to our central faith story of God’s amazing grace?
This week begins a new sermon series that will take us through the rest of this summer! It is called “Never Stop Growing” It will explore in depth the fruit of the Spirit promised to us in Galatians chapter 5. These fruits are signs that Christ and the Holy Spirit are living and active in our lives, but none of us is perfect. Because of the Spirit, we never stop growing: in love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness and self control. What would our families, workplaces, friendships, and sense of our place in the world look like if we focused on growth in these things? How does our world define them and maybe how would God invite us to redefine them in the life of faith?
- WEEK 1: Love
- WEEK 2: Joy
- WEEK 3: Peace
- WEEK 4: Patience
- WEEK 5: Kindness
- WEEK 6: Generosity / Goodness
- WEEK 7: Faithfulness
- WEEK 8: Gentleness
- WEEK 9: Self-Control
This is a bridge week sermon: it is the last sermon in a more general series asking “Who is the Holy Spirit?”. But it also is helping to introduce the series we will dwell in for the rest of the summer focused on the fruit of the Spirit. This week we ask ourselves the questions that Paul was attending to in Galatians:
How do we know we are Christians? How do we know God is at work in us? How does the world know? How does this fruit actually grow in our life and what will it look like?
In weeks to come, we will explore each fruit more in depth, but for now, let us consider how our openness to the Spirit’s work helps us to grow in ways we never could on our own.