Being in an airport recently, I stepped onto a moving sidewalk. I walked through the airport a little faster than walking on my own power. I was still walking, but I could walk with ease because of the force underneath me propelling me forward. Walking in the Spirit is like that. Paul urged us: “Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit” (Galatians 5:25). Energized by God, we are always on the move. Stepping forward. Pressing onward.
Henri Nouwen said, “I cannot continuously say no to this or no to that, unless there is something ten times more attractive to choose. Saying no to my lust, my greed, my needs, and the world’s powers takes an enormous amount of energy. The only hope is to find something so obviously real and attractive that I can devote all my energies to saying yes.” He added that the one thing he could say yes to was being loved by God. Saying
True or False: Freedom means you can do anything you want. Answer: False. Oh sure, you’re free to choose to disobey the law. But then you’d have to cover it up, keep it a secret, and most likely pay for it later. You’re also free to tell a lie. But then you’d have to keep telling the same lie. You’d have to remember who you told it to and how you told it. Or else you’d get caught. You’re free to do drugs, abuse
A young man asked, “I am in earnest about forsaking ‘the world’ and following Christ. But I am puzzled about worldly things. What is it I must forsake?” “Colored clothes, for one thing. Get rid of everything in your wardrobe that is not white. Stop sleeping on a soft pillow. Sell your musical instruments and don’t eat any more white bread. You cannot, if you are sincere about obeying Christ, take warm baths or shave your beard. To shave is to
Sin pulls us down. Christ lifts us up. We affirm, “Christ died for me.” This is called substitution, because we should have died for our sins. But God in his great love for us sent Jesus as the perfect sacrifice to die in our place. We also affirm, “I died in Christ.” This is called identification, because we identify with Christ in his death, burial, and resurrection. “For we know that our old self was crucified with him . . . that we