“I say then: Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh; and these things are contrary to one another, So that you do not do the things you wish.”
If we count this word to be true, then we are forced to realized that many of the problems we face, have nothing to do with a trial nor an attack, but in fact come from a simple result of sowing into the flesh. Paul tells us that the works of the flesh are EVIDENT, we also know that this isn’t an exhaustive list as he finishes with “and the like”. Thankfully, “those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” But Paul also gives us this call to action, “If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.” We cannot walk in both the flesh and the Spirit simultaneously, they war against one another.
I strongly suggest that so much of walking in the Spirit comes down to a choice. A choice in the moment to reframe from walking in the flesh by doing the antithesis in the Spirit. When we become angry and frustrated with those around us, to respond in love and long suffering. Why would we do this? Paul tells us, “Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap. For he who sows to his flesh will of flesh reap corruption, but he who sows to the Spirit will of the Spirit reap everlasting life.”
Have you ever noticed how quickly this takes root in parenting? Yes, children can pick up certain attributes and phases from school or friends, BUT, for the most part the works of the flesh our children act out, is a result of what they have watched their parents model. How often do we as parents ask our children to not… yell, responded with an attitude, be selfish, constantly fight with their siblings? Yet, how many parents do you know, yell at their spouse, respond rudely, are selfish in their desires, speak with a foul mouth, and constantly bicker?
Our focus must than become walking in the Spirit. We will then sow… love, joy , peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. Reaping Everlasting life. As it can be painful at times to part with our flesh, it goes against the nature of the old man, it takes all we have and much more of the faithfulness of the Father to break the bonds of flesh that are prevalent in our lives, we can remain encouraged.
“And let us not grow weary while doing good, for in due season we shall reap if we do not lose heart.” Galatians 6:9