January 24, 2011

The Spirit of Grace

Many fear laying aside rules and religion because then, they think, there will be no clear guidelines for living and sin will abound.

This may happen if we remove the law and then take advantage of our freedom in Christ to do whatever we want to do.

But a life in grace is not like that. A life of grace is a life lived in the Spirit. We won't fully understand God's grace toward us until we learn to walk in the Spirit. For the longest time, I didn't understand what it means to walk in the Spirit and I'm still learning. But here are some things that I know for sure:

  • In religion, we are bound by a behavior checklist and we lead ourselves. We try to experience God by our own efforts. Under grace, we are led by the Spirit. 
  • Walking in the Spirit is simply letting Him have control. We are dependent and obedient to His leading, which answers the fear of sin of abounding. He will always lead us and counsel us according to Scripture.
  • The Spirit helps us understand, recall, and apply truth. This includes God's love and grace toward us. Unless we walk in the Spirit, we will have a very difficult, if not impossible, time grasping God's love toward us.
  • Life in the Spirit is about relationships, with God and other people. He leads us to respond to God in a love relationship and He gives us the ability to love, serve, and help others.
  • Spiritual disciplines are a means of making ourselves available for the Spirit to speak. If we don't have some manner of discipline in our lives, we will have a difficult time hearing Him and knowing how we are to respond to God.
  • As we submit to the Spirit's leading, He will grow us (producing what the Bible calls the fruit of the Spirit). 

The natural next question is How do I know when the Spirit is leading me?

I'll share my thoughts on that in my next post. I look forward to hearing your thoughts too!

Read the next post in this series here.