Yesterday morning when I was praying, I heard deep down inside “Stay in the fruit basket.” I was surprised by that message and it made me laugh. It was around 5 am and even though it was early, I was very alert. I pray very early most days. My spirit is very receptive and ready to go in the wee hours of the day. I didn’t ignore the message and I decided to go with it. I meditated on it and prayed for clarification. The fruit of the Spirit is a big part of what living with the Holy Spirit is all about. The Spirit of God produces beautiful fruit in us. Our job is to grow the fruit and let the guidance of the Spirit take over. We can’t grow spiritually if we take control of the growth. The Spirit assists us. We are not the ones doing the assisting. There is a strong need for dependence and surrender to the Spirit of God in the Church. When we depend on the Spirit, things happen. We start seeing the wonder of His love multiplied in our lives. The fruit basket of the Holy Spirit is all the wonderful attributes that He has and that He wants us to adhere to. Staying in the fruit basket means staying on board with who the Holy Spirit is. We are not called to jump out of the basket so to speak and wander around among the rotten and sour fruit of the world. The fruit basket of the Spirit keeps us in the right field, the field of the Lord, His kingdom. When we are cautioned to seek God’s kingdom first, we are invited to stay with the fruit. If you are ever wondering how you can stay centered in the Lord and how you can grow in Him, stay in the fruit basket!
I try to eat some fruit every day. It is good for my body. I try to eat the fruit of the Spirit every day. It is good for my spirit. Eating the fruit of the Spirit is embracing love, joy, peace, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, patience, long suffering and self-control. The word fruit here represents the attributes that are characteristics of the Holy Spirit. They depict God very well. They are the personification of God. They embody the person we should aspire to become. Jesus gave us the Holy Spirit so we could be more like Him. The fruit of the Spirit is in us. It can mature and it can ripen and reflect the image of the Lord. It is those attributes that make us look more like Jesus. The world needs people who look more like Jesus and not people who pretend to be Jesus. The fruit of the Spirit is genuine, holy and pure. Selflessness is part of the fruit and it is a powerful characteristic. God gave His Son as a sacrifice for the world. That is selflessness! We ought to give up who we are and let the Lord mold us and transform us through the manifestation of His fruit in us. It’s not about us. It is always about Jesus. If we believe that, we will partner with the Holy Spirit and stay in the fruit basket.
When I picture myself in the fruit basket, I see a tiny version of me hanging out in a basket that has fruit that look like giants to me. It is a good way to look at it. The fruit of the Spirit should be bigger than us. They should overtake us and make our ego become small so the fruit in us can spread the good aroma of the Lord. The fruit of the Spirit should be kept in its entirety and in its purest form. We can’t add man-made fertilizers to it and we can’t take its sweetness away. It should stand alone and be appreciated for what it is. God knows how to take care of everything and the ripening process should be entrusted to Him. We shouldn’t try to make the fruit leave the green stage too soon. The fruit will get its color and its sweet taste at the perfect time. We need to remember that it is there and that we can access it at any time even if it’s on a small scale for a while. There is no doubt that with the Holy Spirit the fruit will grow. Let’s stay in the fruit basket and praise the Lord for the good fruit. He knows what we need!
Suggested reading: John 15:5; Galatians 5:22-23; Colossians 3:12-17