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Saturday, January 5, 2013

Walk in the Spirit: A Plan For Spiritual Intimacy

Dear beloved:  As we venture forth into the New Year 2013, I think it is safe to say we all desire to be more intimate in our walk with the Lord.  This is a resolution that I believe we all have in our hearts, whether spoken or just a heartcry that we cry out to the Lord in our quiet times and in the secret place.  It is certainly the will of God that we walk closer with Him, so we can rest in peace in knowing that whatever effort and sacrifice we put forth will be multiplied and blessed by Him.  I have a plan for the coming year called walk in the Spirit that will propel you into a more joyful walk with Him, and free you to move into your destiny in the kingdom.

Paul says in Galatians 5:16 But I say, walk in the Spirit, and you will not carry out the desire of the flesh. v17 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 (the things that move you forward in kingdom destiny).  And so, Paul encourages us to walk in the Spirit, that is to be continually Spirit saturated and Spirit led, so that you will not be distracted and led astray by the enticements of the flesh. For we all know those fleshly pursuits lead to death and destruction and subvert the plan of God for our life.  Paul goes on to say in verse 18, but if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the Law.  He was speaking here of the Old Testament Law and the need for lawless people to be guided and corralled by the Law.  A Spirit filled life sets us free from the confines and restrictions of the law, we have no need for it because our life is led by love for God and for other people in our life.  So in practical day-to-day sense what does it mean to be led by the Spirit and therfore walk in the Spirit? 

I see three main streams or branches of a Spirit led life, each extremely important in its own right, but when taken together produce in us the wholeness of abundant life that Jesus had in mind for us when He said He came to give us life, and life abundantly.  The three branches of the Spirit led life are these: 1) daily communing with the Lord through prayer, 2) daily reflection and meditation by receiving counsel from His word, and 3) consistent fellowship with the saints in church or group bible study.  These three aspects of walking in the Spirit are like the legs of a three legged stool, without any one of the legs the stool falls over, but with all of them in place the stool can withstand any kind of pressure or pushing against it.   Paul goes on to describe the fruits of the Spirit led life: v22 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, v23 gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law.  Again, Paul emphasizes a Spirit led life is above the need for the condemnation, confines, and constrictions of the law, it is a life that is led by the love of the Lord Jesus and His desire for us to reach out to others to bring glory to His Name in our life. In the posts in the days ahead on this blog I will go into greater detail on each of the three legs of the Spirit led chair, so we can see in practical steps how to move into this "lifestyle" for our life.
May God bless you as you pray today.  in Christ, Jim

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