If we live by the Spirit, let us also be guided by the Spirit. Galatians 5:25 NRSV
In Galatians 5, Paul first writes about those things that are in opposition to God, “fornication, impurity, licentiousness, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, anger, quarrels, dissensions, factions, envy, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these (v. 19-21).” Not an exhaustive list by any means, but we get the idea. It makes the list if it is harmful to ourselves or anyone else. But he continues by giving us some attributes we should possess as followers of Christ, “love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness (v. 22-23).”
Although we have accepted Christ and received the gift of the Holy Spirit, we are still tempted each day and struggle against our baser human passions and desires. By the Spirit, we obtain the wisdom and strength to reject what the flesh wants to do. However, this is not a passive activity; we must listen and obey, yield to its guidance, and, when in doubt, seek its advice. Yes, at times, we may still stumble, but when we do, our compassionate and loving God stands ready to forgive when we ask.
Our Father in heaven,
hallowed be your name,
your kingdom come,
your will be done, on earth as in heaven.
Give us today our daily bread.
Forgive us our sins
as we forgive those who sin against us.
Save us from the time of trial
and deliver us from evil.
For the kingdom, the power, and the glory are yours
now and for ever. Amen.
The Lord’s Prayer, Ecumenical Text, United Methodist Hymnal No. 894