"This I say then, walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary to one another: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would." (Galatians 5:16-17)
Scripture teaches us that as Christians we should strive to walk and live a Spirit-filled and Spirit-directed life. We are to strive to allow God's Holy Spirit to have complete control of our lives and actions. Yet we live in an environment that encourages individuals to seek personal gratification and material gain.
As Christians, we must resist the influences and temptations that encourage us to "fulfill the lust of the flesh." God has already promised us that if we put him first, do his will and trust him, he will give us the desires of our hearts (Psalm 37: 3-4). Galatians 5:17 tells us that one reason we do not have some of the things we want or the power we need to do meaningful ministry is because we do not walk in the Spirit. We must remember, God will not allow himself to be second to anything or anyone, not even our own desires. God demands to be first in our lives.
To walk in the Spirit, we must adopt and maintain a healthy daily prayer discipline. The power to resist the temptations of the flesh comes from our connection with God through prayer.
We must read and study God's Word. The Word of God provides a source of instruction, inspiration and encouragement for all who would trust and believe. Study is needed in order to maintain a spiritual path.
And last, we must enter into fellowship and share with other Christian brothers and sisters who are struggling to walk a spiritual path. We gain strength and encouragement from one another. We are in spiritual warfare together. We must hold one another up and pull one another through in moments of weakness and discouragement.
Let us continue to walk in the Spirit so that we might build the kingdom of God on Earth and attain the blessings that God has prepared for us.
Dr. Gregory M. Fuller is pastor of Macedonia Baptist Church on Wrightsboro Road.