As I begin my journey on the Fruit of The Spirit … I believe this is the most important fruit of all. You can’t have any of the Fruits if love is not present.
One of the main messages that comes through loud and clear from studying the Word is the extreme importance that God the Father is places on how to love Him, love ourselves, love one another, and to even go as far as to be able to love our enemies and those who hurt us.
Love is what Jesus had for our Father when He died on the cross so that we could be free from sin and death.
Love is why we are here.
Love is everything.
As humans our ability to love one another is extremely limited. That’s why we need to work closely with the Holy Spirit to put this fruit into the personalities. It’s only when we the Holy Spirit starts to flow and enter into us that we can begin to love God, ourselves and one another as God commands us to.
So what is love?
Definition of LOVE: (1) : strong affection for another arising out of kinship or personal ties (2) : attraction based on sexual desire : affection and tenderness felt by lovers (3) affection based on admiration,benevolence, or common interests.
The original Greek word for love is agape. Agape is love, affection, a love feast, dear love.
“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” 1 Corinthians 13:4-7 ESV
I really desire to love like Jesus… I really do but why is it so difficult to do? My humanness gets in the way of my desire. I can love but i can not do it perfectly. Though Jesus was human was too , He was also created to be love. Jesus was able to see people the way God created them to be. I can’t. We see others’ faults. We remember the slights they have done to us. We have a difficult time forgiving. We love but at the very same time we hold back. Why? We refuse to make ourselves vulnerable as Jesus did for fear of getting hurt.
“A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.” John 13:34 ESV
How can we do the impossible? How can we love like Jesus in our humanness? How can we love and be vulnerable?
Jesus gave us the key!
“With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.” Mark 10:27 ESV
Jesus explains the key to use in John 15:1-15,
“I am the true vine, and my Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in me that does not bear fruit he takes away, and every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit. Already you are clean because of the word that I have spoken to you. Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. Whoever abides in me and I in him, he it is that bears much fruit, for apart from me you can do nothing. If anyone does not abide in me he is thrown away like a branch and withers; and the branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. By this my Father is glorified, that you bear much fruit and so prove to be my disciples. As the Father has loved me, so have I loved you. Abide in my love. If you keep my commandments, you will abide in my love, just as I have kept my Father’s commandments and abide in his love. These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full.”
Did you catch “Apart from me you can do nothing.” We can’t love like Jesus on our own. In fact, we can’t do anything in the Christian life on our own! When we surrender our lives to Jesus, when we abide in Him, He loves others through us! We can endure all the pain of loving others because He is the vine that sustains us. His love heals our hurts and gives us the strength we need to keep going.