Life by the Spirit
13 You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh…
16 So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.
Galatians 5:13, 16-17
Walking by the Spirit and not by the flesh, what does that mean for you and me? I guess first of all we need to understand what is meant by flesh…
Flesh as I understand it is our nature that was in us before we walked with God, our old selves, that person we were before we became new creations in Christ.
It was the way we looked at life and the desires that were not based in God’s will for us. Desires like lust and greed, revenge and control to name a few.
It is that old way of thinking and acting that we must learn to move past as we mature in Christ.
Paul is describing a civil war inside ourselves as we battle against the old us and the new us we are becoming. This is good news friends we are not crazy, we are not the only ones that face this battle as we grow and learn to be more and more of our true selves.
I am reminded of scenes from a few movies over the years in which a person needs to make a decision and on one shoulder is an angel telling the person what should be done and on the other shoulder is a devil saying the opposite. I remember that laughter in the theater on one particular movie in which I knew that not only I, but others in the audience knew what this battle feels like and that it was good to know we were not alone in this struggles.
Paul is reminding us that following the ways of the Spirit is what leads us to the freedom our hearts desire and that following the flesh will usually lead to some form of bandage and turmoil.
We will not always be perfect following the Spirit and there will be times we will fall to the flesh, and that is to be expected for we are and will continue to be works in progress and not finished products.
My prayer for you and I today is that we will intentionally seek to walk in the Spirit and to sacrifice the flesh (our old self) to God. It is for Freedom that Christ set us free…
Walk in the freedom the Spirit brings today…
Have a blessed day,