#16.

True Fellowship Will be Characterized by Gentleness
Ephesians 4:1–3 — Therefore I, the prisoner of the Lord, implore you to walk in a manner worthy of the calling with which you have been called, 2 with all humility and gentleness, with patience, showing tolerance for one another in love, 3 being diligent to preserve the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. The next fruit of the Spirit we want to consider in the context of fellowship is that of gentleness. Remember, we are looking at gifts the Lord gives us and fruits He produces in us that ought to be present when true fellowship takes place between the children of God. It is very easy, and comes quite naturally to us in our fallen condition, to deal harshly with others. However, we do not see this spirit in Christ. Rather, we see Someone Who doesn't snuff out the smoldering flax or break the bruised reed (Isaiah 42:3). We see Someone Who calls the weary and heavy-laden to Himself for rest, Who invites us to take His easy yoke upon us and to learn from Him because He is gentle and humble in heart, and supplies rest for the soul (Matthew 11:28-30). In other words, Jesus would have us to learn gentleness and humility from Him. If Jesus is the supreme Example of gentleness and wants us to learn it from Him, and if gentleness is a fruit produced in all true believers by the Holy Spirit dwelling in them, we have every reason to expect that true fellowship among believers will be rich in gentleness. It will be seen in a gentleness of spirit, of attitude, of behavior. It will not be something forced or artificial, but will flow naturally from their transformed hearts. It is a wonderful thing to see in action, this gentleness of spirit. It is a wonderful thing to experience from others, and a wonderful thing to find ourselves bearing this fruit when we never did as unbelievers. This should be an incentive for us to engage in true fellowship! So let's ensure that in our seasons of fellowship the fruit of gentleness is seen in abundance, for the glory of our Savior! As we do so, Paul tells us, we will be doing something that is necessary to walk worthily of the calling we have received from the Lord.

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