Over the past year we have had car trouble, flapping house siding, a broken dishwasher, leaky pipes, faulty electrical lines, and on and on the list goes. It’s not enough just to live there. We need to keep moving forward with regular maintenance if we want to have a secure place to reside.
Galatians 5:25 “If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.”
Have you ever noticed how things have a tendency to fall apart? Let’s take our house for example. Regardless of how new something may be, things still regularly seem to break or fall into disrepair.
When a person comes to Jesus, God’s Son, as their Savior, they receive new life in Christ. The Spirit of God comes to dwell within them and provides the power needed to live as children of the King of Heaven. But it is not appropriate to continue living according to the old lifestyle. The Apostle Paul tells us in Galatians, “if we live by the Spirit then we must also walk by the Spirit” (emphasis added).
Our natural tendencies of sinful living are still very active even when we accept God’s salvation. “For the flesh sets its desires against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; for these are in opposition to one another, so that you may not do the things that you please” (Gal 5:17). Though we may desire to do the things God wants, it will be impossible if we are not relying on the Spirit to accomplish these things in us.
Without utilizing the Holy Spirit’s power and walking with Him on a daily basis, the ungodly attitudes and actions of idolatry, strife, jealousy, anger, envying, and more will be the default of our human weakness. On the other hand, when we live by the Spirit and walk closely with Him His fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control will be evident in our lives.
Just as our physical house needs regular maintenance, so does our spiritual walk require diligent attention. You can’t just live there; rather, you must be alert to the old tendencies that are constantly pushing their way to the surface. If the water pipes freeze and burst, you need to fix them. If a sinful attitude rears its ugly head, you must immediately give it to God and ask for His help in squelching it. Otherwise, the problem produces other, larger problems and the situation gets worse quickly.
This is much easier to do if you continue walking along and stay on top of things. In other words, don’t just live by the Spirit, but walk closely with Him through prayer and Bible study every day. Listen to God’s words, share with Him your thoughts, obey the things He says, and always be ready to do what needs to be done. Don’t just live – walk!