“But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control…”– St. Paul the Apostle
Last weekend was a holiday here, hence not posting. I trust this weekend went well? In this part of our world, we are counting down to the end of summer, which I personally do not look forward to.
For sometime now, we have been looking at character. We looked at what it is and how it was formed in the first part. The second and third parts have dealt with the entire make up of character culled from Paul’s letter to the Galatian church which is the quote above.
There are nine virtues which make up character in a biblical context. The first three dealt with our attitude, the second trio focused on social relationships. Today’s triad focuses more on principles guiding a person’s conduct. Let us wrap up with the remaining three:
7. Faithfulness– the meaning of faithfulness is fidelity. Another word used is loyalty. Loyalty shows in three areas: how committed you are to your word, to your work and how you relate with authority figures. Most people who are insubordinate are unfaithful. Unfaithful people are very disloyal people. In my humble opinion, I value faithful people than skilled people if I am to choose between the two. Skill is scientific- it can be taught; faithfulness on the other hand, is a character trait- it is a matter of having it or not. Of course, people can be taught to be faithful with time, but it is an uphill task than teaching skill. It is difficult but not impossible.
8. Gentleness– sometimes our definition of being gentle is incomplete but not incorrect. Mostly, it has to do with appearances pertaining to the men: good grooming habits, a sense of fashion, and having good manners and etiquette. That is one half of the definition which is very laudable and needed in society to stand out sometimes. The other half of gentleness shows in how composed you are when you are faced with pressure or meted out with an unexpected circumstance. The person who can keep his or her cool in times of unpleasantness is considered gentle. So in relation to the men, have a high fashion sense, wear a nice cologne & dress the outward, but don’t forget the inward as well. Having a nasty attitude and temperament in a designer suit with expensive shoes is a misnomer.
9. Self control– let me use one word for this: restraint. It shows in our speech: how we talk, how we answer to questions and how graceful we are in our conversations. It also shows in how we relate with people of the opposite sex for that matter, or people in general. Can we relate in decorum and decency without the slightest smell of a scandal? Will we take the advantage or give them the advantage? With that quality, you don’t easily give in to a fight or quarrel. You don’t bite the bait! It takes a strong person to be self controlled. Honestly, I pray to God a lot for this quality, because I cannot think of any man made tactics and strategies that will enhance this attribute in my life better than prayer.
I will like to end on this note that none is perfect. We are all a “work-in-progress”. We will all get to our destination if we don’t quit and put in the work required. This should rather encourage you to be your best you. One of the ways to be that is to allow these fruits to show forth in your life.
Believe that you can do it! Will like to read your thoughts on this one. Your feedback means a lot to me. Please don’t forget to like, share and subscribe to this blog.
Till I come your way again…
Peace & Love