Archive for the ‘Fruit of the Spirit’ Category

November 12th, 2015

Are You Someone to Beware or Behold?

“Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and love greetings in the marketplaces and the best seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at feasts, who devour widows’ houses and for a pretense make long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation.” Luke 20:46-47 (ESV)

As the people of God, we are to put on display the character and nature of God, reflecting His goodness to a world in need. Specifically as those under the new covenant, we are to act in the empowerment of the Spirit through the transformative work of the gospel to bear fruit that evidences our new life in Him. We are to love as Christ has loved us. We are to be peaceful, patient, and kind, following the example of our great Savior. We are to be good, faithful, and gentle to those around us, seeking the good of others above self, and we are to be self-controlled, testifying to the incredible satisfying power of Christ. When we live in this way, we are accomplishing our purpose of bringing glory to God as all creation was intended to do.

A danger, however, exists for those who have learned the actions but failed to experience transformation. As religious people, we can come to appreciate action or service over discipleship and true restoration. Such is the case with the scribes mentioned in Jesus’ warning. They had the appearance of devotion, but were simply white-washed tombs (nice to look at on the outside but dead on the inside). They loved the honor of religion but lacked the heart of devotion reflective of the true, life-transforming love seen in Christ.

Where are you on this transformation spectrum? Have you truly been transformed by the gospel or is your relationship with the Lord more cultural or learned behavior? We are called to display the character and nature of God, and if we cannot do that in response to the gospel, then we are living lives Jesus says to beware of rather than behold. Seek to live faithfully in light of your calling today.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)

Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, November 12th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Fruit of the Spirit, Luke, Transformation.
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September 6th, 2015

Fruitfulness Comes from Faithfulness

“And I will make the land desolate, because they have acted faithlessly, declares the Lord GOD.” Ezekiel 15:8 (ESV)

The Lord declares over His people through His prophet, Ezekiel, that He will take the land of promise, bountiful and flowing with milk and honey, and make it desolate as a result of Israel’s unfaithfulness. The people of God are compared to a vine without fruit, for they have been disconnected from their source of blessing and life. Their rebellion, which they thought would bring ultimate joy, has left them rather barren and desolate.

Certainly, the impact upon us today from this prophecy of old is no less biting. The relationship between faithfulness and fruitfulness still rings true. When you and I faithfully pursue the Lord, we will bear fruit. When we minister faithfully, relying upon both the calling of God and the empowering of the Spirit, our ministries will bear fruit. Fruit-bearing is that simple; it simply happens when you are connected to the source of life! When we walk in rebellion, however, our lives and our ministries suffer as we quench the presence of the Spirit of God upon us.

Consider your life for a moment this morning. Are you relying upon the Lord fully as you prepare for your day? Are you seeking Him in His word? Are you taking the hard truths of scripture and applying them to your life, being conformed into the image of Jesus? Consider the ministries you oversee or in which you are involved. Do you ask the Lord’s presence and blessing upon them, signifying your total reliance upon Him? Or are you like the princes of the people who fear failure more than the favor of God? If you rely upon anything other than the Spirit of God in both your personal life and ministry life, you will be fruitless for fruitfulness only comes with faithfulness.

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Mobilization Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, September 6th, 2015 at 1:00 am
Category Ezekiel, Fruit of the Spirit, Fruitfulness.
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July 3rd, 2014

Displaying His Fruit

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23 (ESV)

Which fruit is most lacking in your life? If patience is lacking, then God will often allow challenging circumstances to come into your life to develop that particular fruit of the Spirit in you. If there is a deficit of gentleness in your demeanor, then God will often engineer opportunities for that fruit of the Spirit to be expanded in your life.

God values you and the display of the fruit of His Spirit through you. Sometimes God will allow difficult people to come into your life in order to cultivate the fruit of the Spirit most neglected in your life. Learning how to love difficult people is a fertile environment for that particular fruit of the Spirit to be developed. Loving difficult people with the same love that God chooses to love you with does not come naturally. Loving difficult people necessitates a supernatural enabling that only comes through the Spirit filled life.

God will develop the fruit of His Spirit in you and through you as you yield to His control. Your flesh will battle to be placed in the display window of life. Therefore, you must choose to allow the Holy Spirit to take full possession of your life in order for His fruit to be displayed. The fruit of the Spirit is featured best in the midst of the trying circumstances you face and the difficult people you embrace.

Crucify the sinful nature (Gal. 5:24) and keep in step with the Spirit (Gal. 5:25). Allow God to develop the fruit of the Spirit in your life so that others will be drawn to Christ.

Drawing Near,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, July 3rd, 2014 at 1:00 am
Category Adversity, Fruit of the Spirit, Sanctification.
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October 16th, 2013

Where’s the Fruit?

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23 (NIV)

Which fruit is most lacking in your life? If patience is lacking, then God will often allow challenging circumstances to come into your life to develop that particular fruit of the Spirit in you. If there is a deficit of gentleness in your demeanor, then God will often engineer opportunities for that fruit of the Spirit to be expanded in your life.

God values you and the display of the fruit of His Spirit through you. Sometimes God will allow difficult people to come into your life in order to cultivate the fruit of the Spirit most neglected in your life. Learning how to love difficult people is a fertile environment for that particular fruit of the Spirit to be developed. Loving difficult people with the same love that God chooses to love you with does not come naturally. Loving difficult people necessitates a supernatural enabling that only comes through the Spirit filled life.

God will develop the fruit of His Spirit in you and through you as you yield to His control. Your flesh will battle to be placed in the display window of life. Therefore, you must choose to allow the Holy Spirit to take full possession of your life in order for His fruit to be displayed. The fruit of the Spirit is featured best in the midst of the trying circumstances you face and the difficult people you embrace.

Crucify the sinful nature (Gal. 5:24) and keep in step with the Spirit (Gal. 5:25). Allow God to develop the fruit of the Spirit in your life so that others will be drawn to Christ.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Lead Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Wednesday, October 16th, 2013 at 1:00 am
Category Abiding in Christ, Fruit of the Spirit, Surrender.
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November 12th, 2012

Are You Someone to Beware or Behold?

“Beware of the scribes, who like to walk around in long robes, and love greetings in the marketplaces and the best seats in the synagogues and the places of honor at feasts, who devour widows’ houses and for a pretense make long prayers. They will receive the greater condemnation.” Luke 20:46-47 (ESV)

As the people of God, we are to put on display the character and nature of God, reflecting His goodness to a world in need. Specifically as those under the new covenant, we are to act in the empowerment of the Spirit through the transformative work of the gospel to bear fruit that evidences our new life in Him. We are to love as Christ has loved us. We are to be peaceful, patient, and kind, following the example of our great Savior. We are to be good, faithful, and gentle to those around us, seeking the good of others above self, and we are to be self-controlled, testifying to the incredible satisfying power of Christ. When we live in this way, we are accomplishing our purpose of bringing glory to God as all creation was intended to do.

A danger, however, exists for those who have learned the actions but failed to experience transformation. As religious people, we can come to appreciate action or service over discipleship and true restoration. Such is the case with the scribes mentioned in Jesus’ warning. They had the appearance of devotion, but were simply white-washed tombs (nice to look at on the outside but dead on the inside). They loved the honor of religion but lacked the heart of devotion reflective of the true, life-transforming love seen in Christ.

Where are you on this transformation spectrum? Have you truly been transformed by the gospel or is your relationship with the Lord more cultural or learned behavior? We are called to display the character and nature of God, and if we cannot do that in response to the gospel, then we are living lives Jesus says to beware of rather than behold. Seek to live faithfully in light of your calling today.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 309:  Matthew 23; Luke 20-21)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Monday, November 12th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Fruit of the Spirit, Luke, Transformation.
Interact No Comments
September 6th, 2012

Fruitfulness Comes from Faithfulness.

“And I will make the land desolate, because they have acted faithlessly, declares the Lord GOD.” Ezekiel 15:8 (ESV)

The Lord declares over His people through His prophet, Ezekiel, that He will take the land of promise, bountiful and flowing with milk and honey, and make it desolate as a result of Israel’s unfaithfulness. The people of God are compared to a vine without fruit, for they have been disconnected from their source of blessing and life. Their rebellion, which they thought would bring ultimate joy, has left them rather barren and desolate.

Certainly, the impact upon us today from this prophecy of old is no less biting. The relationship between faithfulness and fruitfulness still rings true. When you and I faithfully pursue the Lord, we will bear fruit. When we minister faithfully, relying upon both the calling of God and the empowering of the Spirit, our ministries will bear fruit. Fruit-bearing is that simple; it simply happens when you are connected to the source of life! When we walk in rebellion, however, our lives and our ministries suffer as we quench the presence of the Spirit of God upon us.

Consider your life for a moment this morning. Are you relying upon the Lord fully as you prepare for your day? Are you seeking Him in His word? Are you taking the hard truths of scripture and applying them to your life, being conformed into the image of Jesus? Consider the ministries you oversee or in which you are involved. Do you ask the Lord’s presence and blessing upon them, signifying your total reliance upon Him? Or are you like the princes of the people who fear failure more than the favor of God? If you rely upon anything other than the Spirit of God in both your personal life and ministry life, you will be fruitless for fruitfulness only comes with faithfulness.

Chronological Bible Reading Plan: (Day 242:  Ezekiel 13-15)

Grace and peace,

Jared Richard
Associate Pastor (Online Devotional Guest Author)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/jaredrichard

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Thursday, September 6th, 2012 at 1:00 am
Category Ezekiel, Fruit of the Spirit, Fruitfulness.
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October 16th, 2011

Where’s the Fruit?

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Gal 5:22-23 (NIV)

Which fruit is most lacking in your life? If patience is lacking, then God will often allow challenging circumstances to come into your life to develop that particular fruit of the Spirit in you. If there is a deficit of gentleness in your demeanor, then God will often engineer opportunities for that fruit of the Spirit to be expanded in your life.

God values you and the display of the fruit of His Spirit through you. Sometimes God will allow difficult people to come into your life in order to cultivate the fruit of the Spirit most neglected in your life. Learning how to love difficult people is a fertile environment for that particular fruit of the Spirit to be developed. Loving difficult people with the same love that God chooses to love you with does not come naturally. Loving difficult people necessitates a supernatural enabling that only comes through the Spirit filled life.

God will develop the fruit of His Spirit in you and through you as you yield to His control. Your flesh will battle to be placed in the display window of life. Therefore, you must choose to allow the Holy Spirit to take full possession of your life in order for His fruit to be displayed. The fruit of the Spirit is featured best in the midst of the trying circumstances you face and the difficult people you embrace.

Crucify the sinful nature (Gal. 5:24) and keep in step with the Spirit (Gal. 5:25). Allow God to develop the fruit of the Spirit in your life so that others will be drawn to Christ.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, October 16th, 2011 at 1:00 am
Category Abiding in Christ, Fruit of the Spirit, Surrender.
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July 3rd, 2010

Displaying His Fruit

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Gal 5:22-23 (NIV)

Which fruit is most lacking in your life? If patience is lacking, then God will often allow challenging circumstances to come into your life to develop that particular fruit of the Spirit in you. If there is a deficit of gentleness in your demeanor, then God will often engineer opportunities for that fruit of the Spirit to be expanded in your life.

God values you and the display of the fruit of His Spirit through you. Sometimes God will allow difficult people to come into your life in order to cultivate the fruit of the Spirit most neglected in your life. Learning how to love difficult people is a fertile environment for that particular fruit of the Spirit to be developed. Loving difficult people with the same love that God chooses to love you with does not come naturally. Loving difficult people necessitates a supernatural enabling that only comes through the Spirit filled life.

God will develop the fruit of His Spirit in you and through you as you yield to His control. Your flesh will battle to be placed in the display window of life. Therefore, you must choose to allow the Holy Spirit to take full possession of your life in order for His fruit to be displayed. The fruit of the Spirit is featured best in the midst of the trying circumstances you face and the difficult people you embrace.

Crucify the sinful nature (Gal. 5:24) and keep in step with the Spirit (Gal. 5:25). Allow God to develop the fruit of the Spirit in your life so that others will be drawn to Christ.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, July 3rd, 2010 at 1:00 am
Category Adversity, Fruit of the Spirit, Sanctification.
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August 29th, 2009

God Is At Work

“Jesus said to them, My Father is always at his work to this very day, and I, too, am working.’” John 5:17 (NIV)

God’s will involves identifying where God is at work. Jesus said that God is always at work. The question is not, is God at work, but where is God at work. As Henry Blackaby says, “Look to see where God is at work so that you can join Him in what He is doing.” In your current situation, God is at work. In your neighborhood, God is at work. In your community, your country, and on every continent, God is at work. Are you willing to look to see where God is at work and choose to join Him in His activity.

In order to detect where God is at work requires sensitivity. You must be sensitive to God’s activity. You can get so busy in life and so distracted by the things of this world that you become numb toward that activity of God. Sensitivity to God’s activity comes through a life of full surrender. As you surrender your agenda to God’s agenda and surrender your desires to God’s desires, you will begin seeing God’s activity. Your sensitvity to God’s activity will continue to grow as you join God in what He is doing.

There’s no place on earth like being in the center of God’s will. Take some time today to evaluate your level of sensitivity to God’s activity. Have you become anesthetized to the things of God? Have you numb toward the activity of God? Surrender completely to the Lord and ask Him to give you a special sensitivity to His activity.

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor
(This devotional was originally posted in ’07 or ’08. I’m taking a break from writing for a season of personal renewal.)
Follow me on twitter at: http://twitter.com/stephentrammell

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Saturday, August 29th, 2009 at 1:00 am
Category Fruit of the Spirit.
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August 17th, 2008

University of Adversity

“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Gal 5:22-23 (NIV)

In my journey of walking with God over the past twenty-nine years, I have discovered that God will focus on the fruit of the Spirit in your life that is most neglected. Whichever fruit of the Spirit you are least evidencing is the fruit that God will seek to develop in you through the university of adversity. I’ve taken many courses in that particular university.

If you lack the fruit of the Spirit, love, then God will allow difficult people to come into your life in order to give you opportunities to develop that specific fruit of the Spirit. If you lack patience, God will allow trying circumstances to come into the domain of your daily life in order to produce patience in you. That’s why I never ask anyone to pray that God would give me patience. If you lack gentleness, God will orchestrate situations which will give you relational opportunities to develop that particular fruit of the Spirit.

In all things God works for your good (Romans 8:28) and God’s goal for your life is conformity to Christ (Romans 8:29). Anything in your life that doesn’t look like Christ will be removed through God’s loving hammer and chisel of adversity. Don’t be surprised by the adversity God allows into your path. God is building you into a portrait of His grace. Christlikeness is God’s goal for your life!

So how do you look? Do you look like Christ? Is there any attitude or behavior that is not Christlike? Are you drifting from God or drawing near to God? Is the fruit of the Spirit evident in your conversation and your conduct?

Pursuing God,

Stephen Trammell
Executive Pastor

Author Stephen Trammell
Posted Sunday, August 17th, 2008 at 1:00 am
Category Adversity, Fruit of the Spirit, Learning, Teachable.
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