For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Spirit set their minds on the things of the Spirit. (ESV)
The brain is a piece of meat. It is surrounded by chemicals and electricity. It sends signals that cause fingers to twitch and knees to bend, and many things influence how it acts. How much sugar, how much protein, how much alcohol, how much marijuana, how much caffeine…all these and countless more affect the behavior of our flesh.
Living according to the flesh is always to live by the dictates of our electro-chemical makeup. We do this when we feel angry and lash out at someone, when we want something and take it with no regard for others. Living by the Spirit is to make choices about our actions based on God’s will. We do this when we feel angry and choose not to lash out, when we want something and choose not to take it. The more this happens, the more our flesh acts with the Spirit, and we experience less conflict between the two.
How do your actions weigh in the balance between flesh and Spirit? Living by the Holy Spirit is not a matter of muscling up and trying harder. That is still an act of the flesh. Living by the Spirit means surrendering to His gentle guidance.
Jesus, thank You for sending the Holy Spirit to live among us and to dwell in my heart. May I never run so hard and fast that I try to outpace Him. May all I do, say, and think, bring glory to God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit, one God now and forever. Amen.
Copyright © 2014 by Steven R. Perkins