Pettiness is Not a Fruit of the Spirit

Scripture: Galatians 5: 19 -25 (NKJ) 1 - Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, 20idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, 21envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in the time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God.  22But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, 23gentleness & self-control. Against such things there is no law. 24Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. 25Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. 26Let us not become conceited, provoking, and envying each other.

Everyone in their lifetime has overreacted to a situation. Some people live to “overreact”. They actually enjoy it. Pettiness is a behavior that in recent years has become acceptable because the response tends to be humorous to those not on the receiving end; and satisfying to those on the giving end. A petty person will eat all of your favorite cookies because you ate one of theirs without permission. A petty person will take all the books out of the house because you refused to read a book that they suggested. Many times, a person will overreact and the people around her will laugh and say, “Oh, you are petty”. And this response, often makes the giver think the behavior is acceptable. But it is not! Pettiness is not a fruit of the Spirit. It is definitely the work of the flesh. As Believers we are all a work in progress; but sometimes we use that as an excuse to continue to practice sin. Pettiness can be seen everywhere, in your home, your job, and even the church. Yes, there is pettiness in the church amongst the very people who are supposed to represent Christ well. Have you known a person to leave a church because someone else got the position he believed he deserved? That’s petty. Or have you heard of a person leaving the choir because she wasn’t chosen to be the lead in the song she wanted. That was his position; her song! Those responses were petty.

Oftentimes, a person may feel justified in their response, but their behavior does not please God. Can you imagine God being petty? What if God acted like us and overreacted when we sinned? I know, I’d be in a world of trouble if He were. I am so grateful that God is slow to anger, that He is consistent, and that He is gracious. The Bible tells us that the Lord is gracious and merciful; slow to anger and great in lovingkindness (Psalm 145:8). He is also consistent and unchanging. The Bible tells us that Jesus is the same yesterday, today, and forever (Hebrews 13:8). This simply means He won’t switch up on you. He won’t love you today and hate you tomorrow. Furthermore, no matter how often we mess up He’s still there. The Lord does not faint or grow weary; His understanding is unsearchable (Isaiah 40:28). But if he were petty, He would be impatient, self-seeking, and easily angered. We are not representing Christ well when we are petty; we are representing the world.

Prayer: Lord, forgive us for being petty; for overreacting instead of seeking Your advice. Forgive us for acting like children when we don’t get our way. Thank you for Your example and Your Word that guides us. Thank you for Your patience and kindness. And as we strive to be more like You fill us with Your Spirit so when people see us, they also see You. In Jesus Name I pray, Amen.

(by Paricia Towns)

6 Comments


Robin McCants - June 11th, 2020 at 4:30am

Amen Sister! Time is too short for pettiness.

Marsha - June 11th, 2020 at 4:33am

Amen!!!

Deborah Whye - June 11th, 2020 at 6:01am

Amen sis!

Wendy - June 11th, 2020 at 4:17pm

Amen ! Sister Pat thank you”Lord does not Faint or grow weary..

Star - June 12th, 2020 at 4:21pm

Amen Sis Pat

novella - June 15th, 2020 at 2:16am

amen Sister 🙏

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