What is “chaff?” Museum of Frontier Culture After threshing grain and separating from stalk, tossed into air Heavier grain falls to floor, lighter chaff blows away with the breeze
Chaff … Are the things in my life that might seem impressive, but when life is over and the Judgment comes, will amount to nothing Such as …?
On the other hand, “fruit” is … Alive Connected to and fed by its roots Nourishing and substantial Won’t blow away like chaff
The Fruitful Person “They are like trees planted by streams of water, which yield their fruit in its season, and their leaves do not wither. In all that they do, they prosper.” Psalm 1:3
Jesus on Fruit: “I am the vine, you are the branches. Those who abide in me and I in them bear much fruit, because apart from me you can do nothing. Whoever does not abide in me is thrown away like a branch and withers; such branches are gathered, thrown into the fire, and burned. “ John 15:5-6
What is this “Fruit?” “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” Galatians 5:22-23
A Diagnostic “Check-up” How am I doing? School: grades Sales: quotas Games: the score Business: bottom line Church: “A.B.C” (?)
But how am I doing spiritually? How can I tell if I am abiding in Jesus? How can I determine if my life is fruitful or chaff-like? How can I assess my progress or slippage?
The Fruit of the Spirit Nine categories of Galatians 5:22-23 Am I progressing or slipping in each area? The issue is (non) “growth” Rate: compared to 1, 3, 6, 12 months ago, how am I doing? Arrows: Up, Down, Plateau
1. Love Am I engaging in more acts of servanthood? Is my heart more tender toward God? Are my most important relationships more intimate or superficial?
2. Joy How much am I laughing? Whining? Am I responding out of circumstances or out of character? Thermometer or Thermostat? My “gratitude” factor?
3. Peace Is my heart and mind more or less at ease? Are my relationships promoting peace or stirring dissension? Am I more or less opinionated?
4. Patience When I don’t get my own way, how do I respond? When frustrated, what’s my reflex? How’s my driving? Waiting in line? Grace when things are slow?
5. Kindness Am I more likely to do good things for others when I know there will be no return benefit from it? Am I more/less affirming? Likely to say “thank you? More/less hospitable?
6. Generosity What proportion of my income am I giving to God, the poor, and others? Do I desire to give more? Am I giving in other ways?
7. Faithfulness Or “perseverance” Am I more/less tenacious? More/less likely to give up? Am I tougher? Thicker- skinned? More dependable? How am I on procrastination?
8. Gentleness More/less approachable? More/less tender? Do I use words to bless or to inflict pain? Am I able to mourn with others’ losses?
9. Self-Control How’s my mouth? Are there bad habits I wrestle with? Am I more/less likely to give into impulses?
Your Score? The overall direction: fruit or chaff? What are two areas of celebration? Two areas of concern?
Table talk: How are we doing? Each person share one area of growth and one area of difficulty We’ll poll for “strong” and “trouble” spots for whole group Identify “growth areas” for each person in the household, S.A.M. goals in time frame
Spirituality Checkup: Fruit or Chaff? Dr. John P. Chandler www.rasnet.org Copy Right John P. Chandler, 2001