Day 47: Galatians 5:16-25
So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 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. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit.
Life hits us hard. It makes all kinds of demands on us. Many of us are so busy that we have a hard time slowing down for enough time to think. We’ve got to get this kid to baseball practice and that kid to dance lessons. We have to pick up some groceries and get the dog to the vet. Tomorrow, the schedule may be different, but it will be just as chaotic and busy. There are seasons of life that make it hard to find the time to reflect on how we are to live.
Paul tells us in this passage that there are two natures trying to exert their authority over us. One, the life led by the Spirit, will give life and hope. The other, the life led by the flesh, will ultimately bring destruction. So how do we lead a life in which we are in step with the Spirit of the Lord?
There is a story of an old Indian sage talking about what he had learned in his many years. He told a young brave that there are two natures in us fighting for supremacy. One nature is like a mean dog that will make us selfish and self-centered. The other nature is like a tame dog that readily knows who its master is and behaves accordingly.
The younger Indian asked, “Which dog controls your life?”
The sage answered, “That’s easy – the dog you feed the most will rule your life.”
Doug Boquist | Lead Pastor