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Fruit takes time to produce. You don’t plant an apple seed one day and expect apples the next. The same is true with the fruit of the Spirit—it takes time for the character of Christ to be formed in us. Not only does it take time, but it also takes the right conditions and ingredients. One of the keys for bearing good fruit is that we must sow to the Spirit and not to the flesh. Below is an excerpt from the Rooted Discipleship Manual where I teach on what it means to sow to the Spirit.
Sowing to the Spirit
We have a continual choice to either sow to the flesh or sow to the Spirit. If we sow to the flesh, we will reap the works of the flesh, and corruption and death will be the result. If we sow to the Spirit, His fruit will be produced in our lives.
“Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of the flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.” (Galatians 6:7-8)
Instead of feeding our flesh, we must sow to the Spirit. As we consistently sow to the Spirit over time, the fruit of the Spirit will be cultivated in our lives in increasing measure. Here are some ways that we can be intentional to sow to the Spirit.
- Spending time in the secret place of prayer
- Feeding regularly on God’s Word
- Obeying the Lord’s commands
- Walking in a lifestyle of repentance and staying in the light
- Walking with others in the body of Christ and connecting to the local church
- Learning to recognize and follow the voice of God
- Keeping our relationships pure and being quick to forgive others
- Committing to speak truth and words that are life-giving
Growing in the fruit of the Spirit will happen as a byproduct of walking with God and following His ways. The character of Christ will grow and be formed in us. Others will benefit from the fruit that is being produced in our lives—they will experience the goodness, love, and kindness of God. They will benefit from our patience and self-control. They will be brought into greater joy and peace.
While we certainly benefit from cultivating the fruit of the Spirit, it is ultimately for the glory of God and benefit of others that we develop good fruit. Just as a fruit tree produces fruit for the sake of others to enjoy, we cultivate the fruit of the Spirit so that others can taste and see that the Lord is good! (see Psalm 34:8).
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The Rooted Discipleship Manual is all about spiritual growth. Being saved and set free should be seen as a beginning, not an end. We are born again into God’s Kingdom, and now we are called to know God intimately, mature in Christ, and produce the fruit that He desires. In order for this to happen, we must be rooted.
This discipleship manual will help equip you with foundational truths and spiritual disciplines necessary to grow in your relationship with God. Each lesson contains biblical teaching combined with sections for reflection and personal application. Rooted can be used for personal study and growth, small group teaching and discussion, or as a tool for discipling others.