Updated: Jun 21, 2021
STEP 1 - Read Galatians 5:13-26
(13) You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the flesh; rather, serve one another humbly in love. (14) For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: “Love your neighbor as yourself.” (15) If you bite and devour each other, watch out or you will be destroyed by each other.
(16) So I say,
walk by the Spirit,
and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.
(17) For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. (18) But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
(19) The acts of the flesh are obvious: sexual immorality, impurity and debauchery; (20) idolatry and witchcraft; hatred, discord, jealousy, fits of rage, selfish ambition, dissensions, factions (21) and envy; drunkenness, orgies, and the like. I warn you, as I did before, that those who live like this will not inherit the kingdom of God.
(22) But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, (23) gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law. (24) Those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. (25) Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit. (26) Let us not become conceited, provoking and envying each other.
STEP 2 - Reflect
This passage begins with a seemingly unnecessary phrase "So, I say...," but let the significance of this statement sink in. Who is the one saying these things to you? On one hand, it's the Apostle Paul. But more significantly, although these words we're reading were written down by Paul, they were breathed out by the Holy Spirit. Know that God is speaking directly to you as you read His Word.
The reason it's important to know who's saying this to you comes in the second line, where you're told to "walk by the Spirit." That phrase 'walk by' can also be translated as 'live according to." Remember, although you've been set free from your slavery to sin, it doesn't mean you're free to do whatever you please, rather, you now have an obligation to the one who freed you. That would be the Holy Spirit.
In order to "walk by the Spirit," you need to be listening to the Spirit. When I was in Cadets growing up, we had to hike one by one through a narrow gorge that was completely covered by grass and trees. The only way we could find the way out was to listen to the voice of the counselor calling us from the other end. The best way to stay on track walking by the Spirit is by doing exactly what you're doing right now: reading and reflecting on the Words He wrote down for you in the Bible.
Walking by the Spirit will give you the strength you need to keep from being enslaved once again to your old, sinful self. When Paul says not to "gratify the desires of the flesh," he doesn't mean that you can't do anything to enjoy yourself. What he means by this is that you need to resist the never ending temptation that your sinful old self continues to throw at you.
Keep your daily Bible reading habit strong to keep yourself strong.
STEP 3 - Respond
STEP 4 - Reach up in prayer
ACKNOWLEDGE WHO GOD IS: The triune (three in one) God who speaks to you through the Bible
ALIGN YOURSELF WITH GOD'S WILL: Ask God to help you hear Him clearly as He speaks to you so that you will walk according to the Spirit and not in sin
ASK FOR WHAT YOU NEED: