The Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! Galatians 5:22-23
The story is told of a woman who went to a marriage counselor for advice. “I want to divorce my husband,” she said, “and I want to hurt him as much as I can.”
“In that case,” the counselor advised, “start showering him with compliments. When you have become indispensable to him—when he thinks you love him devotedly—then start the divorce action. That’s the way to hurt him most.”
Some months later, the wife returned to report that she had followed the counselor’s advice.
“Good,” said the counselor. “Now’s the time to file for divorce.”
“Divorce?” said the woman. “Never! I’ve fallen in love with the guy.”
Loving words and actions change not only the spouse; they change the one speaking and acting lovingly. Didn’t Jesus say, “Love your enemies” (Matthew 5:44)? Perhaps your spouse qualifies, at least at certain moments! It may seem impossible, but Galatians 5 reassures us that it’s not all up to us. The Holy Spirit, who dwells within believers, produces godly attributes in us: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. What a list! All we need to do is allow him to work within us.
Loving your spouse in the power of the Holy Spirit will never make things worse. Who knows? Things may get better. Go against your emotions, and give love a chance.
Father, I am so grateful for the gift of the Holy Spirit, who is able to produce wonderful fruit in me. Please help me to get out of the way and allow the Spirit to work. With your help, I can love my spouse through my actions, even when I don’t feel like doing it. I want to be transformed by your love, Lord.