If you are like me, as you read the description of the Spirit's fruit in Galatians 5—the character qualities manifested by the Holy Spirit—you are likely to throw up your hands and cry, "That's an impossible standard!" But that's the point! You can't bear the fruit of the Spirit in your own strength. These character traits can be manifested in you only by the Holy Spirit.
He can fill you daily with His presence and power. It is in yielding ourselves to God—readily admitting that in our own power we are not loving, not joyful, not at peace, not patient, not faithful, not kind, not good, not meek, not self-controlled—that He fills us with the character likeness of Christ. When we cry out to Him for more of His presence and His help, His Spirit goes to work, transforming us into the image of Christ with ever increasing glory (see 2 Corinthians 3:18).
You can't bear the fruit of the Spirit in your own strength.
To become more like Christ, we must become less bound to our own impulses and desires. How this happens is a great mystery of God, but it is undeniably true nonetheless. When we live by the power of the Spirit, keeping in step with our best friend throughout our lives, we will naturally find fulfillment, abundant life, and peace.
Prayer: Lord, I know that in my own strength, I cannot produce the fruit of the Spirit. Spirit, fill me with Your power and presence so that I might become more and more like Christ. I pray in the name of Jesus. Amen.
"Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, who with unveiled faces contemplate the Lord's glory, are being transformed into his image with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit" (2 Corinthians 3:17-18).
Learn more in Dr. Michael Youssef's sermon The Spirituality That Heals, Part 10: LISTEN NOW