“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control”
If you’ve spent any amount of time around the church, you’ve heard the fruit of the Spirit. These are things that we are to display in our lives as we walk in the Holy Spirit each day. While they’re things that seem to be pretty simple, they can often be difficult to live out.
Recently, I was having lunch with a friend and pastor. We were talking through some things, and one of the topics that came up was conflict resolution and relationships. He told me that one thing he always keeps in mind when walking into a difficult conversation (especially a conflict) is the fruit of the Spirit. He will keep repeating them over and over in his head–love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control–until he gets to the meeting. Then he tries his best to live those out through the meeting with whoever he’s talking to.
I’ve encountered more conflict in my life recently than in any other time. Occasionally this will be a difficult situation with a student, which is exactly what’s coming up for me. Instead of getting angry, I need to remember to always keep the fruit of the Spirit in mind. Even when the tough conversations have to happen, keep the fruit of the Spirit in mind.