“You learned it (the gospel) from Epaphras, our faithful minister of Christ on our behalf, and who also told us of your love in the Spirit.” Colossians 7-8 NIV
I thought this post would move on into Paul’s prayer for the saints in Colossae, but instead, the Spirit alerted and informed me that we needed to allow this one to be seen a bit more than just a mention.
“and who also told us of your love in the Spirit.” This is an excellent rendering of the Greek and tells us that they loved Paul with a love that wasn’t human love. We have a tendency to interpret all the commands to love, as conforming our human understanding to loving as He loved. Well, that is eventually done through the Spirit, but it is not such much a matter of effort as it is His work.
“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Against such things there is no law.” Galatians 5:22-23
The fruit of the Holy Spirit is not developed in us through study, prayer, our diligent effort or any action we can do — it is simply the by-product of fellowship in and with the Holy Spirit. “Fruit” is always a by-product. The apple tree simply stands and allows the tending of its fruit to the environment around it and the care of its caretaker. The development of any fruit is much the same. It does nothing but “be.” That is much like the fruit developing within us as believers. We must just rest and fellowship in the Holy Spirit and leave the rest to Him. The realm of the Spirit is not a matter of human control and development, but of a willing heart to simply dwell in and with Him. Through that willing heart, much will be developed. But it is His work and His fruit.
Fear of what He might do will hamper and stunt our growth. Controlling Him is off the table. Willing hearts, open to be and do as He wills — that produces what human effort cannot do. It is known as sabbath — not as a day, but as a lifestyle. Trust and rest in our Jesus and purposely releasing the action of the Holy Spirit within us. Fear is always a work of our enemy to keep us from truly becoming who the Lord made us to be in Him and from enjoying Him entirely.
“And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” Romans 5:2b-5
God’s love has been “poured” (“gushed into” is a better rendering of the word) out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us! The very “love of the Holy Spirit” that is required to love others, regardless of who they are in our lives, has been given abundantly (like a Niagara Falls gushing) into our hearts. This happened as a result of our hearts receiving Him. It had nothing to do with our effort to get it; it was given free of any effort and given massively.
Human love is manipulative, controlling, and self-serving. His Holy Spirit love is free, abundant, entire, and a gift – always. We discover we can love — regardless. We learn to put up boundaries where they are needed and to order this love by the Spirit’s ways and instructions.
But Brother and Sister, our ability to love and include others is boundless. Our human love is to be given to Him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, mind, soul, strength” – remember? It is all to Him, but He has given us an ability supernaturally to love others – regardless of who they are and what they have done in His love.
This is an awesome provision. Now as we lean into the Spirit of God, we are shown how to love appropriately and thoroughly to release Him to interact within the relationship. He has given it all. Now, let’s take some time with and in the Holy Spirit to refresh our hearts and allow Him to show us the difference in our lives – His way.
How? It is simply. Get alone with Him and release Him inside you and around you into your atmosphere. Allow what He moves and receive what He gives. Over time, this time will be so precious that we will learn to do it anytime we have a moment to spare. The boundless refreshment and riches are more than can be spoken or written. Let’s give it a go Beloved readers!
May the blessings of the Lord rest upon you and teach you His goodness today!