Whether you are a parent, a Sunday school teacher, or a homeschooling mom, the fruit of the spirit for kids is something you will explore at some point in time.
Why? Because they are guiding lights for how we are meant to behave.
And you know what? They are not easy. Everyone will find that at least half of the fruits of the spirit do not come naturally for them. While we go through this fruit of the spirit lesson for kids, let’s remind them that it is God working in their hearts that produces the fruit and often times a great deal of prayer is needed.
What are the Fruits of the Spirit?
Let’s start with what the fruits of the spirit are as told to us by Paul.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such, there is no law. (Galatians 5:22-23)
Now, before we plunge into this Bible lesson for kids, let’s take a look at Paul’s point.
I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these are contrary to one another, so that you do not do the things that you wish. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law. (Galatians 5:17-18)
Because we have a sinful flesh, we are naturally inclined to sinful behavior. Paul is telling us that there is a better way. To make this clear to us, he first lists the wicked behavior that we embrace which is displeasing to God.
Now the works of the flesh are evident, which are: adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lewdness, idolatry, sorcery, hatred, contentions, jealousies, outbursts of wrath, selfish ambitions, dissensions, heresies, envy, murders, drunkenness, revelries, and the like; of which I tell you beforehand, just as I also told you in time past, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. (Galatians 5:19-21)
If you are teaching older kids, you might want to go over the list of sinful behaviors as well as spiritual behaviors to give them an understanding of what Paul is teaching and how we have this constant struggle of good and evil in our lives.
Fruits of the Spirit for Kids
How you address the fruits of the spirit for kids really depends on the age you are teaching. When my kids are young, we make fruit salad together, talk about what each fruit is and then connect it to a spiritual fruit. In the end, they laugh and smile as they eat peace, joy, gentleness, etc.
The best way to teach any kid the fruit of the spirit is to model it to them. Obviously, we are not perfect parents and constantly modeling the fruits of the spirit would be a lot of pressure.
This is where role playing comes in. I highly recommend you and the kids acting out how to be gentle, how to show patience, what joy looks like etc. You will find that these little charades will be an eye opening experience and leave a lasting impression.
How do You Explain the Fruits of the Spirit?
Let’s go over each of the fruits of the spirit together and brainstorm the best way to explain them to our eager young learners.
- Love: While love might seem like a no brainer, it is important to understand that love is selfless. True love is not looking for love in return. Check out “Inspirational Bible Verses for Kids about God’s Love” for a more detailed study on love.
- Joy: While we all want to be happy, true joy is not an emotion. Joy is not dependent on your circumstances or how you are feeling about life on a particular day. True joy comes from a relationship with Christ. For a deeper study of joy, check out “What does the Bible Say about Joy and Why we Should Embrace it”.
- Peace: Similar to joy, peace is not just a feeling that many of us seek. True peace comes from finding our refuge and safety in God. Guess what? I have a post on that too LOL “Jesus as Prince of Peace and How to Embrace Him this Season”.
- Longsuffering (Patience): In KJV and NKJV longsuffering is used, but in many other versions patience is used. By definition, patience is “the capacity to accept or tolerate delay, trouble, or suffering without getting angry or upset.” This encompasses both our interaction with people and situations and the frustrations we encounter. Discuss how we have the choice to react to situations with patience or anger and frustration.
- Kindness: This is one we begin teaching our kids as soon as they are old enough to talk. Learning to love one another will grow kindness in both our actions and our language. By the time kids are 6 or 7 they have a good grasp on what is kind and what is not. The situations change as kids get older and role playing is a great way to emphasize the various areas of life we can show kindness (not passing on gossip, sharing, speaking politely, helping our neighbors, including those who feel left out).
- Goodness: Let’s focus on the goodness of God and not the goodness of man. How is God good? He loves and supports us, he provides for us and protects us, he forgives us and shows grace. How can we show goodness to others? We can help and support those who need it. We can forgive and be gracious to others’ mistakes. For a more detailed study on forgiveness, check out “Parables and Stories of Forgiveness in the Bible”.
- Faithfulness: Faithfulness can be found in various situations. Because Paul mentions adultery in his list of the fruits of the flesh, we can guess that faithfulness means remaining loyal to your spouse. How can we teach faithfulness in fruit of the spirit for kids? Remaining loyal to God and standing up for truth.
- Gentleness: If you look up the definition of gentleness, it contains two great meanings. 1. the quality of being kind, tender, or mild-mannered. 2. softness of action or effect; lightness. Gentleness is seen in the way we handle situations and in our actions and communications with those around us.
- Self-Control: I think our minds first go to bad tempers when we think of self-control, but let’s extend that to include controlling drama and emotions other than anger. We also need self-control in our behaviors, especially where sin is concerned. Self-control will prevent us from engaging when temped. One other important self-control point is that of our tongues. Learning to control our words is a lifelong struggle for many (can you see me waving my hand because this is such a trap for me!).
I’m feeling a little bit like I need this fruit of the spirit Bible study for kids 😉
Fruit of the Spirit Coloring Pages
Fruit of the spirit coloring pages are a great way to cement God’s word into young minds! These fruit of the spirit coloring pages are absolutely free 🙂
Children’s Ministry Deals has some great coloring pages as well.
Bible Story Printables has some cute printables, coloring pages, and activities if you are looking for more printables.
Fruit of the Spirit Song
Few things help us memorize scripture better than songs. There are several cute fruit of the spirit songs on Youtube. These are our favorites and perfect for any fruit of the spirit lesson for kids.
Another great way to hide God’s word in your children’s hearts is through games. This Bible Bingo for kids is a great place to start! Click image below to find out more 🙂
Other Bible Lessons for Kids You Might Enjoy
I love to write Bible lessons for kids. It makes my heart glad teaching my children about God and sharing the most important part of my life with them.
“Therefore you shall lay up these words of mine in your heart and in your soul, and bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes.
You shall teach them to your children, speaking of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. And you shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates,
that your days and the days of your children may be multiplied in the land of which the Lord swore to your fathers to give them, like the days of the heavens above the earth. (Deuteronomy 11:18-21)
With this in mind, I thought I’d include some of the other Bible lessons for kids posts you might like to check out.
Fun Devotions for Youth: Learning God’s Word Hands On is a fun devotion that combines a science lesson with a Biblical truth (totally not science related).
Bible Verses about the Power of Words: Hands-On Devotions for Kids is a great object lesson about taming the tongue.
Courage for Kids: How to Teach Bravery is full of book suggestions, activites, and games to play to encourage your kids out of their comfort zone.
How to Teach Kids Caring and Compassion is full of book suggestions, crafts, and activities to help your kids be aware of their actions and learn how to deal with others actions toward them in a positive way.
20 Ideas for Teaching Our Kids about Connecting with God through Nature is a fun Bible lesson for kids with endless ideas that teach us to look to God every day.
Looking for a great way to teach your kids gratitude? Check out this gratitude journal for kids by clicking the image below 🙂