This is an examination of life as it is unfolding here and now, inspired by St. Martha and based on Galatians 5,22-23: “… the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.” All of these are reflected in the life of St. Martha (whose Feast we celebrate today), but take a moment to notice that St. Paul writes of a single fruit, not multiple fruits. Perhaps the fruit of the Spirit in St. Paul’s mind and heart is like citrus, with many segments!
- Am I always dealing with others in a spirit of Christian love?
- Do I temper everything—even sadness or anger—with joy?
- Can I find peace in striving to do God’s work?
- Will I be patient with others and myself during this time of pandemic?
- Will kindness characterize all of my communication?
- Does goodness manifest itself as ‘sharing my time and gifts’ to help?
- Do I remain faithful to Christ in Word and Sacrament?
- Am I meeting harshness, misunderstanding, or criticism with gentleness?
- Do I control my emotions when they might impede my prayer for others?
As we move through these days confinement, quarantine, and social-distancing, let us call on the power of the Spirit to bear fruit in our lives again and again. Through the guidance and gentle care of the Spirit – and the generous intercession of St. Martha – may we continue to grow as disciples of the Lord. “Come, Holy Spirit, and renew the face of the earth!”