Some things must die in order to be productive. Certain seeds will not germinate into a plant unless they freeze during the winter. Jesus knew that His death would bring salvation to the world.
The moment you became a Christian, your sinful nature died (Rom. 6:6), but there remained sinful aspects of your character that had not gone to their graves willingly. Before you became a Christian, were you self-centered? You may discover selfishness lingering in your life when you ought to be freely sharing what you have in the name of Christ (Matt. 10:8). Did you have a volatile temper? Now as a believer, you experience moments when anger wells up within you. Were you driven by ambition? You may still find yourself with the same motivation as you strive for recognition and position in the kingdom of God.
If these sinful attitudes are allowed to remain alive, they will stifle the fruits of the Spirit. Your temper may prevent some from coming to Jesus. Your selfishness will hinder you from being a blessing to those around you. Your ambition could cause you to use others to meet your goals. Your family may be suffering because of some areas of your life that you have never allowed Jesus to put to death. It is futile to say, “But that’s just the way I am!” That is the way you were. But that person died with Christ; you are a new creation (2 Cor. 5:17). Allow God to complete His work in you and see what fruit your life produces.