“Search me, God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts. See if there is any offensive way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:23-24 NIV
For years I have prayed this scripture passage to open myself up for a time of confession with God. I’ve unfortunately got many sins to choose to talk to Him about, but I spend most of my time trying NOT to think about how rotten I am so saying these verses out loud invokes the Holy Spirit’s powers of conviction and puts my heart in the ultimate state of humility.
It’s important to deal with unconfessed sin in our lives to keep clear lines of communication with our Heavenly Father. But in my ever-increasing desire to become more and more Christ-like, I have expanded my confessional time. It’s not enough for me to recount and repent of things I’ve done wrong. I also need to look at what I could do better. And I’ve decided Galatians 5:22-23 is the perfect accountability tool.
“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.”
Taking an inventory of how these fruits are manifesting (or not) in my life is a great way to keep myself attuned to the gentle guidance of God’s Holy Spirit. How have I shown God’s love to other’s this week? I could have shown more patience with my daughter yesterday. Have I been faithful by spending quality time in God’s word and prayer? Do I need to reboot my self-control in the areas of food, spending or temper?
Give it a try. Try jotting down each fruit, picturing it as a different flavor and color in your vibrant life. Take note of the ways the attributes of God have sweetened the world around you and ways you could improve. Talk to the Father about it and thank Him for how He loves and directs us.