Our lives have been transformed by the love of Christ. Our sins have been forgiven and washed away by His taking our place on the cross. By His resurrection from the dead we have been given the promise of eternal life in Heaven.

Our lives have been transformed by the love of Christ. We are chosen people, children of God, part of His family, citizens of the Kingdom of Heaven. We have been chosen for a purpose. We have been equipped with all that we need to be His servants and co-workers here on earth. We have been called to be Stewards of all that He has entrusted us with.

We are deeply loved by Him – with a love that will never end.

And the key to this “Transformed Life”? When we were “born again” His Holy Spirit was given to us – to be with us forever. It is by the power of His Holy Spirit in us that we are able to know Him and live with Him and work for and with Him.

We live not by feelings but by the Truth. And the Truth says that the Holy Spirit IS with us. But, how do we KNOW that He is with us?

Well, the Bible tells us that just as a tree is known by the fruit that it bears (so an apple tree is recognised by the apples that grow on it), so we will be recognised as the people of God by the “fruit” that is seen on us. This fruit is known as the “fruit of the Spirit” in that people will see attributes, character traits, outworkings – “fruit” – that comes from (and so is evidence of) the Holy Spirit now living in us and with us.

And what is this “fruit”? Paul, in Galatians 5:22-23, tells us –

the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23 gentleness and self-control

Nine characteristics of the Spirit-filled Christian – ALL who are disciples of Jesus – that over the coming weeks we are going to be looking at in detail.

And let me make myself clear. This is not a series of condemnation – I will not be looking to make you feel a failure or “bad” because you struggle with (for example) self-control.

Rather it is a series of encouragement – to show us all who we already ARE in Christ Jesus and who we CAN BE as we allow His Holy Spirit to continue to transform our lives. For, fruit grows best when the “tree” is worked at – watered and dug round, and fertilised and pruned – there’s lots to do for us

[A short film clip that might encourage you:]