Walk in Love
Let’s see…right now my nail polish is severely chipping; my roots are at least an inch long; school supplies are scattered all over the dining room table; flowers continue to sit in the driveway unplanted; my bed isn’t made; my laundry is in a giant mound on the floor; suitcase still out; my dog still needs her check-up at the vet; printer not working; dust bunnies galore; school bus form is now late b/c I forgot to send it; and the list could go on and on!!! Oh no…what will people think?!!!!!!!
What does all this say about me? Perhaps to some these things seem petty and minor. I know they even do to me as I think about my dad and mother-in-law battling cancer, my brother-in-law who was laid off, a friend who just lost her sister, marriages in crisis, severe emotional pain everywhere. Yet, these are the thoughts that spiral through my head during the day. These are the thoughts that I dwell on. My to-do list.
I don’t necessarily consciously believe that if all these things were made right then I would be acceptable to the Lord, to my family, friends, church, and bystanders. Yet I know that is what is down deep in my heart. Idolatry. This continues to be where I look to find my identity. Is my to-do list getting accomplished? No? Well then I’m no good. Yes? Well then all is well with the world. Then I’m good. Then I’m acceptable.
LIES!!! LIES!!! LIES!!! I’m not walking in the light of Christ’s love. I’m walking in lies. Listening to lies. Believing lies. Living lies.
“For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works so that no one may boast” (Eph. 2:8-9).
“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not nullify the grace of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose” (Gal. 2:20-21).
“yet we know that a person is not justified by works of the law but through faith in Jesus Christ” (Gal. 2:16a).
“O foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched you? It was before your eyes that Jesus Christ was publicly portrayed as crucified. Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith? Are you so foolish? Having begun by the Spirit, are you now being perfected by the flesh” (Gal. 3:1-3)?
“Wretched man that I am! Who will deliver me from this body of death? Thanks be to God through Jesus Christ our Lord! (Romans 7:24-25a).
The Gospel is our only hope. Christ in us, the hope of glory. The Gospel is the truth no matter what our feelings may tell us. There is no good in us. We are sinners from head to toe. Utterly depraved. Without hope apart from Christ, our flesh cannot be redeemed. It is by grace alone, through faith in Christ alone that we are saved. Faith is a gift from the Lord. He opened our eyes. He removed our hearts of stone and gave us hearts of flesh. He brought us to life. He will bring us safely home. We are justified in Christ. He has given us His righteousness though we deserved His wrath.
“But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8).
I want to walk by the Spirit. I don’t want to walk in the flesh. I want to be full of the Spirit, not full of self. I want a thankful heart, a submissive heart, not a prideful and arrogant heart. I want to believe God’s word and truly live by it.
“But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do” (Gal. 5:16-17).
The Lord has provided us with such a great tool to help us in this battle. Our Taking the Truth to Heart and Bringing it to Life is truly a gift from the Lord. Through this tool, He is showing us how to walk in the light, walk in love, walk in the gospel.
“Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise, making the best use of the time, because the days are evil” (Eph. 5:15-16).
We are all weak. Let us join together as sisters in Christ and pray for one another asking for God’s grace to believe the truth of the Gospel and live in the grace of God’s love. Let us do all that we can to take our wrong thinking captive and replace those thoughts with the truths of God’s word. “I have stored up your word in my heart, that I might not sin against you” (Psalm 119:11).
Lord, help us make the best use of our time, by truly meditating on our Taking the Truth to Heart verses. By writing them out on cards and taking those with us. By putting our verses in our smart phones and setting reminders in our phones to review them and then really review them. By reciting them in the shower. Practicing them in the car. Telling them to our husbands and children. By praying during the day asking for your help to believe the Gospel and walk in the love of Christ. Jesus we need you!!! Thank you for providing all that we need, for blessing us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places!! In your name, we pray, Amen.
“Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to deliver us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be the glory forever and ever. Amen” (Gal. 1:3-5).
Written by: Susan Sampson