If you’ve ever tasted a fresh piece of fruit, then you know how delicious and refreshing it can be. It's lovely to look at and is filled with healthy nutrients that enrich the body. The freshness is what makes it so vital and nourishing, particularly on a hot, summer day.
Many Christians do not realize that the fruit of the Spirit (referred to in Galatians 5:22-23) has already been given to them. It is their inheritance. They are busy harshly judging themselves in accordance with outward manifestations in the natural world, and do not acknowledge the extraordinary treasure within them. Sadly, they don't realize that it is the natural world that must bend to the Spiritual, not the other way around. They begin to work for something they already have and, in the end, all they've produced is plastic fruit.
It is important to know that everything we need for life and godliness has been given to us in Christ (see 2 Peter 1:3) and that we become effective by acknowledging every good thing which is in us in Christ (see Philemon 1:6). Then we can watch these beautiful qualities grow and manifest within us, even amidst the natural world. If you think you must work on yourself to produce fruit of your own making, you will inevitably end up disillusioned and disenchanted with the Christian life. It’s too hard and it will never be as perfect as you want it to be.
When you see evidence of God living in you and through you, you realize that through Jesus, you have been grafted into the Tree of Life. It’s how it was always meant to be. It is who you were always meant to be. And it is what you were always meant to give to the world around you: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, gentleness, faithfulness, goodness, and self-control. Jesus has already invited you to the banquet. Come, partake, and enjoy!