What is the Fruit of the Spirit and How Does it Affect Our Lives?

by Sister McCook

As Christians, we know that the Holy Spirit dwells in us, and we are called to live by His guidance.

The Fruit of the Spirit is a term used to describe the nine characteristics that the Holy Spirit produces in us as we submit ourselves to His will.

These attributes are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

Let’s look more at what the Fruit of the Spirit is and how it can influence our daily lives.


Love is the foundation of all the other fruits and is exhibited through our actions toward others.

We are commanded to love one another as Christ has loved us.

Love is selfless, it is compassionate, and it gives without expecting anything in return.

When we allow the Holy Spirit to cultivate love in our hearts, it affects all areas of our lives, from our relationships with friends and family, to how we treat strangers, to our attitudes towards ourselves.


In John 15:11, Jesus tells us that He wants our joy to be complete.

In other words, we can experience true joy when we abide in Him.

When we are filled with joy from the Spirit, it affects our mood, and outlook on life, and enables us to find contentment in all circumstances.

We also become contagious joy carriers to those around us, spreading the love of Christ with our smiles, laughter, and positive attitudes.


Peace is the third fruit of the Spirit and is characterized by a calmness of spirit even in the midst of chaos.

This peace comes from knowing that Christ has overcome the world and that nothing can separate us from His love.

When we allow the Holy Spirit to work in our lives, He grants us peace that surpasses all understanding.

We become peacemakers, seeking reconciliation in situations of conflict and sharing the peace that Christ has given us with others.


Patience is an attribute that can be a challenge to cultivate in our lives, especially in a culture of instant gratification.

Yet, patience is necessary for loving others well, as we learn to wait on God’s timing and control our reactions toward others.

As James 1:4 puts it, “Let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.”

When we allow the Spirit to work patience in our lives, our relationships grow deeper, and we become more understanding of others, even in trying circumstances.


Kindness is closely related to love and involves treating others with respect, compassion, and consideration.

Kindness is demonstrated through actions such as helping those in need, showing empathy towards others, and using words that uplift and build up.

When the Holy Spirit produces kindness in us, we become the embodiment of Christ’s love, and our actions and attitudes toward others invite them also into His grace and mercy.


Goodness is an attitude of kindness, generosity, and mercy.

When we are filled with goodness from the Holy Spirit, our hearts are directed toward doing good for others.

We are willing to go out of our way to help someone in need, or simply offer a kind word of encouragement in difficult times.

Goodness also brings joy and peace to our lives, as we experience the satisfaction that comes from sharing God’s love with others.


Faithfulness is an attitude of trustworthiness and dependability.

When we are faithful to God, we keep our promises to Him and remain devoted to His will.

We also become more reliable in our relationships with others, as we show up for them when they need us the most.

We are also faithful in our commitments to our jobs, school, and other responsibilities.

Faithfulness enables us to be a source of stability in this ever-changing world.


Gentleness is an attitude of kindness and consideration towards others.

We are called to be gentle with our words, attitudes, and actions.

Gentleness is not a sign of weakness; it is an expression of strength in all we do. It is a way of showing love and care to those around us.

As we cultivate gentleness in our lives, we become more aware of how our words and actions can affect people, and we can begin to regulate them in a way that honors God.


Self-control is an attitude of discipline and self-restraint.

It enables us to resist temptation, manage our emotions, and stay focused on our calling from God.

Self-control is not easy to cultivate, but when we rely on the help of the Holy Spirit, He will grant us the strength and courage we need to remain committed to His will.

What is the Purpose of the Fruit of the Spirit?

The fruit of the Spirit has a specific purpose in our lives, and that is to transform us into the likeness of Christ.

When we receive Christ as our Savior, we become a new creation, and the Holy Spirit begins to work in us to produce the fruit of the Spirit.

The purpose of the fruit of the Spirit is to develop in us the character of Christ, to help us become more like Him, and to reflect His love, joy, peace, and patience to others.

How Does the Fruit of the Spirit Affect Our Lives?

The fruit of the Spirit has a significant impact on our daily lives.

When we allow the Holy Spirit to produce the fruit of love, we become more compassionate, selfless, and forgiving toward others.

The fruit of joy produces contentment and gratitude in our hearts, even in the midst of difficult circumstances.

Similarly, the fruit of peace helps us remain calm and steady in times of turmoil.

The fruit of patience allows us to endure trials and to wait on God’s timing.

The fruit of kindness, goodness, and gentleness enable us to treat others with respect, compassion, and understanding.

The fruit of faithfulness teaches us to stay true to our commitments, both to God and to others.

Finally, the fruit of self-control helps us manage our desires and passions, so they don’t control us.

What Happens When We Don’t Cultivate the Fruit of the Spirit?

When we fail to cultivate the fruit of the Spirit, we become spiritually malnourished.

We become disconnected from God and lose our sense of purpose and meaning.

Instead of reflecting Christ’s character, we exhibit the opposite traits, such as anger, impatience, self-centeredness, and pride.

These negative qualities bring chaos and destruction into our lives and can harm our relationships with others.

Where in the Bible can the fruits of the Spirit be found?

The fruits of the Spirit can be found in Galatians 5:22-23: “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.”

These fruits are the result of the indwelling of the Holy Spirit in our lives.

This passage lists the nine fruits of the Spirit that believers are called to bear.

These fruits are not natural characteristics of humanity but are instead bestowed upon believers through the Holy Spirit.

Why Do Believers Bear the Fruits of the Spirit?

Believers bear the fruits of the Spirit to reflect the love and grace of God in their lives.

These fruits are meant to transform us and make us more like Christ.

As we bear the fruits of the Spirit, we testify to the world the power of God’s love and bring glory to His name.

How Do You Demonstrate the Fruits of the Spirit?

We demonstrate the fruits of the Spirit by living a life that reflects them.

Love is demonstrated through acts of compassion and service, joy in the midst of trial, peace in the face of conflict, patience with ourselves and others, kindness towards all people, goodness towards those who don’t deserve it, faithfulness in our relationships, and commitments, gentleness in our words and actions, and self-control in the face of temptation.

Which Fruit of the Spirit Are You?

Each person has a dominant fruit of the Spirit that is prevalent in their life.

We can identify our dominant fruit by examining our actions and responses to different situations in life.

If you love easily and find joy in serving others, you may have love and joy as your dominant fruits.

If you are patient and kind with others, you may have patience and kindness as your dominant fruits.

It is essential to remember that we are all meant to bear all nine fruits of the Spirit, but we will all have a dominant fruit that is prevalent in our lives.

Practical Examples of the Fruits of the Spirit

Love – Practical examples of love include showing kindness to strangers, serving those in need, and forgiving those who have wronged us.

Joy – Practical examples of joy include having a gratitude journal, spending time in nature, and singing worship songs.

Peace – Practical examples of peace include taking time to meditate, making time for rest and relaxation, and finding ways to simplify our lives.

Patience – Practical examples of patience include taking a deep breath before reacting in anger, practicing empathy for others, and trusting in God’s plan for our lives.

Kindness – Practical examples of kindness include volunteering in our communities, doing random acts of kindness for strangers, and showing patience and understanding towards those who differ from us.

Goodness – Practical examples of goodness include practicing integrity in our daily lives, speaking truth even when it’s uncomfortable, and being a good listener for those in need of an ear.

Faithfulness – Practical examples of faithfulness include making time for daily prayer and bible study, serving in our church or community, and keeping our promises no matter how small.

Gentleness – Practical examples of gentleness include being sensitive to the needs of others, listening without judgment, and having a peaceful presence in the face of conflict.

Self-Control – Practical examples of self-control include learning to say no to unhealthy habits or activities, setting healthy boundaries, and practicing healthy coping mechanisms to handle stress.

Living out the Fruits of the Spirit requires intentional and practical application in our daily lives.

It’s not enough to know them, we must also actively seek to embody them because they can have a profound impact on our daily lives and set us apart as followers of Christ.

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