“And when they had prayed, the place where they had gathered together was shaken, and they were all filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak the word of God with boldness. “ Acts 4:31
“But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. 17 For the flesh sets its desire 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. “ Galatians 5:16-17
What is a habit?
The dictionary defines it as a acquired behavior pattern regularly followed until it has become almost involuntary.
We all have habits. The important question then becomes — what kind of habits do we have? Are they good Christian habits or are they bad worldly habits?
Galatians 5 reminds us that there is a constant conflict between the flesh and the spirit, a conflict between the old nature and new nature . As long as we are alive we will always have struggles. And what the flesh desires will always be in opposition with what the spirit desires. That is why it is very important to develop the habit of walking in the Spirit.
Who are the real enemies of the Christian life?
Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. (1 Peter 5:8)
Satan’s playground is the mind. The battle begins here. The devil builds a stronghold in your thought life to enslave you. It can be your weaknesses, painful past, or other unwholesome thoughts. Overcoming wrong thinking is taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:4-5). Guard your thought life (Philippians 4:8). When your thoughts are not aligned with the Scripture, rebuke them. What you think impacts your behavior and disposition. Wrong thinking will lead to wrong behavior. Walk in the Spirit. The moment temptation comes, nip it in the bud. Refuse to let it control you. Instead be continually controlled and empowered by the Spirit.
2. The World
Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. (1 John 2:15)
The value system of the world promotes vanity, self-sufficiency, materialism, etc. The world always tries to influence your desire to have possessions, power, or pleasure. It distorts your view of God’s truths. It tries to make you conform to the ways of the world. Be on your guard. Do not form attachments to the blessings you enjoy. Be thankful of these blessings. However, do not make them your god.
For what I am doing, I do not understand; for I am not practicing what I would like to do, but I am doing the very thing I hate… (Romans 7:15)
The Scripture tells us that even the apostle Paul struggled with his self. Your very nature can be your worst enemy. You appear to have it together but struggle with sin inside.
Do not lose heart. Wrestling with sin is a sign that you are sensitive to the Holy Spirit. A life free from struggles can be an indication that sin has taken hold of your life.
Sin is deadly. It distorts your mind. It is like a parasite controlling your brain. It wants you to fall into the cycle of sin over and over again. You do not have the power to control sin. You need God’s supernatural power to break the cycle of sin.
God’s Provision to Help Us Walk in the Spirit
Wretched man that I am! Who will set me free from the body of this death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7:24-25)
The law of sin enslaves you. You cannot defy it by your own effort. You need the law of the Spirit to override the law of sin.
For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has set you free from the law of sin and of death. (Romans 8:2)
When you begin to yield to the full control of the Holy Spirit, you will experience His power. Walking in the Spirit is practicing spiritual breathing.
Exhale – Confess to God your sin at once. God has already forgiven you when Jesus died on the cross. To confess is to agree that you have sinned. After confessing, thank God for His forgiveness.
Inhale – Ask God to let the Holy Spirit take over your life again. You must believe that God has provided you the Holy Spirit to act as your Helper (John 14:16). He is not given to you to condemn you. He is there to point you to Jesus (John 16:8-11). However, the Holy Spirit will convict you of your sin. Unless you are convinced that you are a sinner, you will not realize that you need Jesus.
God knows all your failures and weaknesses. He helps you overcome the power of sin by forgiving you and enabling you to walk in the Spirit.