Northeastern District 6
Church of God by Faith, Inc.
From Faithfulness to Fruitfulness
Published: Tuesday, 10 November 2015 14:20
Written by: Minister Domonique Brunson, COGBF, Northeastern District
Greetings, my Dear Sisters in Christ!
I pray that all is well with you and yours and that you are continuing to walk in the unmerited favor of God. Briefly, I want to share some thoughts from my heart to yours regarding faithfulness and the fruit it produces.
We are currently in the midst of a series on the Fruit of the Spirit on the Spiritual Life section found here. They can all be found in a very familiar passage of scripture, Galatians 5:22-23. The three previous verses of this same chapter, 19-21, lists acts of the flesh that we as awesome women of God should have come out of when we came to Christ. However, some may still be fervently striving through the power of God. These acts include adultery, fornication, idolatry, drunkenness, envying, hatred, etc, and the verses tell us that we cannot inherit the kingdom of God if we practice them.
Now, while we were still living sinful lifestyles, some can honestly say that we enjoyed ourselves! We had a lot of fun “doing us.” We were “faithful” to some or even all of the works and the guilty pleasures that these verses refer to and because of our faithfulness…we produced the kinds of fruit that in reality, left our lives barren and unfulfilled. Not such a happy ending, right?
We saw fruits such as sadness, depression, anger, confusion, dysfunctional relationships, mental instability, etc. We were searching for fruit that would fill us up because all of the fruit we were producing caused our hunger and search for “something” to continue to grow. And to delve even deeper, some of us may have lost our minds or had nervous breakdowns or just BARELY got out of abusive relationships alive—BUT GOD STEPPED IN and cut the vine!
That vine of the world was producing fruit that would have eventually killed you physically and might have already killed you spiritually. This type of fruit is extremely bitter and this is a very accurate picture of where faithfulness to the world and the flesh will lead you. But, Andraé Crouch told us years ago that “Jesus is the answer for the world today…” and guess what…He is still the answer TODAY! Nothing and nobody else in this world can completely and perfectly fill the void inside of us like Jesus can because that void was tailor-made for Him!
After being enlightened to that fact, let’s fast-forward to our present day lives. We are now walking in deliverance and we are on the Lord’s side. The fruit that we now bear no longer resembles that of the world, but our fruit now comes from the Holy Spirit! Can somebody say Hallelujah?!?
Now we can say that our lives are full of love, joy, and peace instead of sadness, confusion, and depression because we are connected to the True Vine—Jesus Christ. We are learning how to suffer and suffer LONG (with a family member, coworker, friend, etc.) if necessary. We are learning how to better control our temper and respond to angry situations not with “choice” words, but with kind and gentle words that promote goodness because we know that a soft answer turns away wrath (Proverbs 15:1). We understand that we can get much further in life (careers, relationships, etc.) if we display meekness and humility.
Now, don’t get me wrong, you may not see all of these fruit at once because just like fruit grow naturally, they must also grow spiritually. So, don’t worry if you only see a few at first, faithfulness to God will produce more fruit.
We know now not to follow the world’s example, but to follow Jesus, the greatest Example ever shown. Like a juicy strawberry (yum!), this fruit gets sweeter by the day and we now have “sweet relief” and rest.
The decision to follow Him is the best one we could ever make and many women you come in contact with nowadays may wonder how it is even POSSIBLE to deny your flesh. They may say that the flesh wants what it wants and that is true, but if the spirit is willing…I’ll leave that alone.
That point in your witness is the opportunity to tell them that we are empowered to deny the flesh ONLY because we said yes to Jesus one day and He filled us with His Holy Spirit. We can tell them that because we have vowed to be faithful to Him, He has been faithful to bring forth the quality fruit that they see in our lives.
It is not possible any other way and no, it is not easy every day. In fact, some days it may be extremely difficult. But, one thing I can assure you of is that I do NOT regret my decision to follow Jesus one bit because He gave me the power to remain faithful!
Sharing our faith in Christ encourages not only other people, but it also uplifts our spirit and reminds us how much better the fruit in our lives is now than it used to be. When you “remember when” you were faithful to yourself and the fruit that resulted, a praise ought to bubble up in your belly because you realize where you could have been and what your life could have been like.
Now, we never have to worry about the fruit in our lives “spoiling” because our True Vine’s source is the Living Water! Nothing in this world can compare to a life of faithfulness to Christ. So, if you are reading this and wondering how you can experience this kind of fruit, I urge to talk to God about it. He is waiting to cut away the “vines” of this world that you may be entangled in and attach you to the True Vine, where true freedom lies. My earnest desire and prayer is that we all be able to live lives where the fruit of the Spirit spills over into every area in abundance.
May God richly bless and keep you!
Your Sister In Christ,
Minister Domonique Brunson