Two-Stepping

Our Christian walk is a two-step process. We start by repenting of our former way of life, which was degraded by Satan’s lies and earthly desires (Ephesians 4:22). Each of us is distracted by various sinful elements.

Some of us lie, but God calls us to speak truth; or we steal and take what does not belong to us, yet God calls us to work and earn money to buy what we need, as well as to share with others (Ephesians 4:25, 28).

Some have trouble with anger; and though it is a God given emotion, we often harbor grudges, while God encourages us to forgive before the sun sets each day, so that we do not give Satan entry into our soul (Ephesians 4:26-27).

Other people use foul language, when God wants us to use our words to edify and minister grace to those who hear us. Some even take God’s name in vain and use degrading words, which grieve God’s Spirit (Ephesians 4:29-30).

All of us give in at one time or another to bitterness, quarreling, gossip, antagonism and forms of cruelty, when God calls us to live with humility, compassion, patience, gentleness and kindness, as we forgive slights and wrongs just as God forgives us (Ephesians 4:31-32; Colossians 3:10).

The second step is to renew our mind with the righteousness mind of Christ and to walk in true holiness all the days of our life (Luke 1:75; Ephesians 4:24). This may sound daunting, but Christ already did it for us.

We are buried with Christ through our baptism into His death, in order to be raised with Him from death in the glory of God, our Father. This allows us to live a fulfilled, blessed new life in Christ, as we exchange our corrupted character with the nature of Christ, promised to us by God Himself (2 Peter 1:4; Romans 6:4; Colossians 3:3-4).

Prayer:
Father God, by separating our self from the sin, which once bound us as its slave, we are freed from the law and allowed to serve You through Your Spirit, rather than by decrees and legalism (Romans 7:6). You enable us to submit to You as You transform our mind, rather than to be conformed to the design of this evil world.

We have no more desire to gratify the sinful desires of our flesh, and we walk as a new creation, Your handiwork, created in Christ to live in Your will, which You prepared for us prior to our birth (Ephesians 2:10; Romans 12:2, 13:14; 2 Corinthians 5:17; Colossians 3:10).

Thought for the Day:
My soul silently waits for God alone; my salvation comes from Him. He alone is my rock and my salvation; He is my stronghold; I will never be shaken. – Psalm 62:1-2

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God’s Spirit

A lack of peace and victory in our life occurs when we severe our connection with God’s Spirit by sinful behavior (Ephesians 4:30). If we will allow Him to do so, God’s Spirit will deliver us from the temptation of sin (Matthew 4:4). Christ’s victory on Calvary’s cross set us free from the power of sin and death (Romans 7:24-25). Christ in us is our only hope of eternal glory (Colossians 1:27).

Without the Trinity, we struggle to maintain victory in this sin-cursed world. As Christians, we often rely more on our own efforts in this world, than in relying on God’s Spirit within us. We are God’s handiwork, and He wants us to do only the works, which He created for us to do (Ephesians 2:10). We do not need to earn our connection with God, it is guaranteed (Ephesians 1:14).

The Kingdom of God cannot be found in our carnal attempts to please God, but lies in our righteousness, peace and joy, which comes from abiding in the Holy Spirit within us (Romans 14:17). God’s Spirit gives us everlasting life (Romans 8:13). He does not come and go in our life, reserved just for special occasions; but He is constant and reliable, always available to us through every moment of the day (Romans 8:9).

We did not earn our salvation by our human effort and we cannot walk in sanctification by human effort either (Galatians 3:1-3). The Spirit of God rebirths our spirit, which was dead in Adam’s sin. Then, He sanctifies our soul from one level of maturity to a higher plane of spirituality (2 Corinthians 3:18). Unless we live by the power and direction of God’s Spirit, we will not walk in fulfillment and victory in this life.

Prayer:
Father God, remind us to trust in You to bring us into Your will for our life. You give us the faith of Christ and the power of Your Spirit, so that we can walk uprightly in this world. Thank You that we are no longer a part of this world, even though we still have to live in it. Our flesh is crucified with Christ in baptism, and we are raised to walk in new life with You (Romans 6:4). Remind us that Christ is our life (Colossians 3:4), and nothing on this earth can satisfy the longing in our soul.

Thought for the Day:
If we trust in our self, we fail. Only God can work out His will for, in and through us. – Philippians 2:12-13