Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Walking in the Spirit

Galatians 5 says that if we walk in the Spirit, we will not carry out the deeds of the flesh.  But what is walking in the Spirit.  I believe it means faith.  Believing that what God has said He has done, He has actually done.  He has made us new. He has made us complete.  He is able to work this newness and completeness out into our actions and lives to the praise of His glorious grace. 

If God has transformed us. If God's promises are true of us.  If we have been impacted by the power of God in raising Jesus from the dead.  If the God of the universe, the creator of all things, who was and who is and who will always be.  If He said He has transformed us into new creations in Christ, then we are indeed new.  To say otherwise, is to call God a liar and to walk according to the flesh, believing the lies of the flesh.  But if we agree with the Truth of God's word, renewing our minds according to the truth, then we will walk free in Christ.

I don't know if this makes sense to anyone, but it seems so clear to me.  It's like the lame man on the mat. Jesus said to him, Get up, take up your mat and walk.  The man had a choice at that moment. He could have questioned Jesus, challenging Him on the physical reality that he has been lame for only God knows how long.  He could have said that he didn't feel his feet, so he'd lie there and wait until some feeling came, then he would get up.  Jesus expected this man to obey Him, by faith.  Against all the odds. Against all his past.  Against all his pain and emotional turmoil.  Jesus expected this man to rise up, take up his mat and walk.  Impossible according to the world of sight.  But not impossible for the world of faith.  The world of faith is the world of God, the unseen reality of God.

We have been born again of imperishable Seed.  We who were dead in our trespasses and sins, He has made alive, having forgiven everything.  And now He enables us to walk by faith and not by sight.  He enables us, who once were blind, to see.  He enables us, who once were lame, to walk.  He has entered into a holy union with us, filling us with Himself, and connected us into Himself.  We are engulfed in God and all things are possible for us in Christ, for those who believe. 

Is it any wonder that Jesus answered those who wanted to know how to work the works of God, like feeding 5000 people, and He said, Your work is to believe in the One whom God sent.  Is it any wonder our work is to believe?  Belief defies emotions. Belief defies sight.  Belief looks to God who created us and believes that He is true and does not lie.  What He says about me is true.  Water is really hard. I will not sink.  Though my legs are lame, I will walk.  Though emotions stir inside me and threaten me with dysfunction, I am fully functional and stand in perfect peace.

We look to the God who made us, who is able to make us stand.  He is the one who is working in us to will and to do for His good pleasure.  He has given us everything we need for life and godliness. We can stand victoriously in this life, on this planet, now.  He is sufficient and the work He accomplished on the cross is complete.  He has finished the work and calls us to believe Him and to walk with Him by faith as He fully saves us, fully completed what He has begun.  He is always working all things together.  We cannot fail.  We trust in God and He is ruler over all.  He was before the beginning and with Him there is no end. We are connected into Him and He alone is our strength and shield.  In Him, we have refuge and peace in the midst of storms.  Our minds are fixed on Him, as He has authored and He is now perfecting our faith.

As I sit here, in the quiet cabin when everyone is asleep, I am meditating on these truths, the reality of who I really am in Christ.  Of who we are as Christians.  Of why so many of us struggle and live less than the abundant life we have been promised.  The answer, I believe, lies in Faith. We don't believe.  We would be like the lame man who questions Jesus and refuses to get up until he feels like he can.  Instead, let's be like the lame man who took up his mat and walked.  Let's believe the impossible because God says it's true.  And in believing we will walk by faith and not by sight. Day by day we will walk by faith, resting in God who has accomplished all He would ever expect of us.   We will walk in the Spirit and will not carry out the deeds of the flesh. 

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