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Weekly Wisdoms for the week of December 19, 2016

Your spirit is more powerful than your flesh.

1 John 4:4 says, The one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world. The Holy Spirit, who lives in you if you are born again, is greater than anything in the world, including your flesh. Therefore, you do not have to be controlled by your flesh and worldly lusts.

In Luke 10:19, Jesus says, "I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you." This verse doesn't mean that things won't come against us, but it does mean that even when hard things come against us, God has given us the power to remain peaceful and joyful even in the midst of the difficult circumstances.

Remember that God "is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us" (Ephesians 3:20).

The power God has given us is amazing; however, many Christians never activate that power in their own lives because they don't really believe that God will personally work in them.

Remember that Jesus said, "it shall be done for you as you have believed" (Matthew 8:13). Therefore, dare to believe that God has given you the power to do awesome things for Him--things that you can only do because your spirit is more powerful than your flesh.

The Fruit of the Spirit ought to be the trademark of every believer.

How can you identify Christians? Not by their outward appearances, their WWJD bracelets, their Jesus bumper-stickers, or any other superficial items.

Instead, Jesus tells us that we are known by our fruit: "By their fruit you will recognize them. Do people pick grapes from thornbushes, or figs from thistles? Likewise every good tree bears good fruit, but a bad tree bears bad fruit. A good tree cannot bear bad fruit, and a bad tree cannot bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus, by their fruit you will recognize them" (Matthew 7:16-20).

The "fruit" that Jesus is talking about is the Fruit of the Spirit (see Galatians 5:22-23). In other words, when the world sees Christians, they should see the Fruit of the Spirit -- love, joy, peace, etc.

When you see the "golden arch" you can identify that building as a McDonalds restaurant, and when you see the "swoosh" you can identify that article of clothing as part of the Nike brand. Just like those things, when people in the world see someone consistently displaying the Fruit of the Spirit regardless of the circumstances, they should be able to identify that person as a Christian. Believers need to be marked by the Fruit of the Spirit.