Progress through the Fruits of the Spirit

Spiritual Exercise 78


I will allow my spirit to rest a little and consider where I am going and for what purpose. I make a gesture of reverence and humility. I read the prayer texts.

Opening Prayer
I ask the Spirit for grace, help, and understanding of the fruits, that I may use them better for her greater service.

I desire spiritual progress through the fruits of the Spirit.

1. I consider love. What does love mean to me?

2. Where is love present in my life?

3. Where is love absent in my life?

4. I reflect on the contrary of love.

After 3 minutes of consideration, I ask the Spirit for what I desire now.

I say the Our Father.

The same procedure is repeated for each of the seven fruits.


After going over all the fruits, I examine them as a whole. I ask myself:

1. Which gift do I have in the greatest measure, more than any other?

2. Which gift do I desire for greater service of God?

3. Which gift would give me the greatest inner peace now?

In conversation with the Spirit, I ask for grace and help. Then I choose one gift to live well today.

Prayer Texts


Fruits of the Spirit

1. Love
2. Joy
3. Peace
4. Patience
5. Kindness
6. Generosity
7. Gentleness

The Spirit of the Lord shall rest on him, the spirit of wisdom and understanding, the spirit of counsel and might, the spirit of knowledge and the fear of the Lord. (Is 11:2)

The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. If we live by the Spirit, let us also be guided by the Spirit. (Gal 5:22–23, 25)

Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.
To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the discernment of spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues.
All these are activated by one and the same Spirit, who allots to each one individually just as the Spirit chooses. (1 Cor 12:4–11)


Time: 35 Minutes

Preparation: 5 minutes. Opening Prayer: 1 minute. Desire: 1 minute. Prayer: 25 minutes. Conversation: 3 minutes. Listening Book: 10 minutes.


Interested in tasting Inner Peace in Service of God, the retreat of this exercise? Source the First Spiritual Exercises here.
Alternatively, check to see if the whole retreat is offered this month under the Spiritual Exercises menu.

Your responsible agreement is necessary for printing and use of this exercise:

I agree give the FSE to others without cost.
I agree to use the attribution: First Spiritual Exercises © Michael Hansen  Ave Maria Press
I agree to embody the FSE Code of Ethics and the The FSE Golden Rules.
I agree to create a FSE Safety Net before giving the FSE retreats.