But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forebearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.
Galatians 5, 22
This positive list is not complete, we can add several good features to it. A person who has these qualities is certainly a happy person and highly valued by others. Who would not want to be like this? Our whole aspiration is to be as described above.
But there is also the opposite, a negative list here in Galatians 5:19f: “The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions, envy; drunkenness, orgies and the like.” This list is not exhaustive either. We may add to it.
Where do we stand? On the positive or negative side?
We notice very quickly how we yearn for the positive qualities, but often something comes between, we overreact to little things and old hatred comes up again and bitterness stirs and unsympathy rules and the tongue works too fast again and and and …. Why can’t we just be “good”? We want it and we try hard! Are always only the others to blame?
Often it is injuries from childhood that make us react so violently and suddenly. These injuries are not healed and are not forgotten. The fear of new injuries lies deep within us and that is why we react so violently. These wounds must be exposed so that they can be healed and we can become a healed personality. This is hard work, often connected with tears! We must learn to forgive and ask for forgiveness for our hard reactions! We must first recognize the injuries and not remain blind. Then Jesus can heal them. His principle is: forgiveness first, then healing. But if we hide our sin and do not want to acknowledge our harsh reactions as sin, we remain as we are; – Jesus cannot heal us.
There are other reasons for our reactions, there are other devotions dedicated to this theme. For today, test yourself to see if you are overreacting violently and if there are injuries behind it. Forgive the guilty! Ask for forgiveness for your wrong defensive reactions! And then ask Jesus to heal your heart.
In this way you will become a little bit more of a healed personality again, an image of God here in this dark world.
Thank You Jesus, You mean well with me and have good goals in mind for me! Help me heal! Even if it hurts, I want it! Help me to remember, to forgive and to be healed! Thank You for loving me so much!