The Power: Christ Formed In You

Happy teenage girls driving a bumper carsScripture: Ephesians 5:18

Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit.” (NIV)

We have a choice to make. Who is going to control how we think, feel, and act? Christ or the old self?

We have seen that the Spirit of God gives us the power to walk in the newness of life since we are raised with Christ from the dead. We have seen how the Spirit works in the life of the believer to transform us from the inside out.

So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.” (Galatians 5:16, NIV)

If the Spirit controls us we will overcome the power of sin in our life. “For if you live according to the flesh, you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the misdeeds of the body, you will live.” (Romans 8:13, NIV)

Both of these verses say we have the power of choice here. What will it be? It is up to us.

As a child I was taken to an amusement park from time to time. Usually, we ride on the bumper cars that had large rubber rings around them to protect the drivers. The “fun” was trying to bump the other cars. Sometimes people would hit us too hard. That would produce a fleshly reaction of anger that would make us want to hit back as hard as possible.

Life is like this. We are always being “bumped” by circumstances and other people. Sometimes these bumps can be rather nasty, producing a less-than-Christian response. At those moments we have a decision to make: Will we let the old flesh control our reaction, or will Christ control us?

We make the choice by the act of our will. If we fail to make the right choice, we need to confess the sin and ask the Holy Spirit to again assume control. “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.” (1 John 1:9, NIV)

The old self does rear its ugly head from time to time, so we want to be careful to keep a “short sin list” by confessing our sin when we become aware of it.

Today, ask yourself:

Am I choosing to be controlled by the Holy Spirit so my life can be brought into conformance with the will of God? Is my behavior becoming more Christ like?

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