If you are joining me from this week’s Proverbs 31 Online Bible Studies’ Living So That Blog Hop, welcome!!
Those who live according to the flesh have their minds set on what the flesh desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires. ~Romans 8:5
How do we feed our Spirit and combat the flesh especially when, like Paul, we struggle to do what is right?
For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do—this I keep on doing! ~Romans 7:19
God gives us so many different ways we can feed our Spirit and fight the flesh. Here are just three…
1. Feed your Spirit with prayer.
This isn’t complicated. In fact, God makes prayer an incredibly simple, yet powerful gift for His children! Through prayer God grants us strength, encouragement, and aligns our will with His. Jesus prayed throughout His ministry and probably the most potent moment of prayer was the night He was betrayed; Matthew 26:36-46. Here he too was strengthened for what was ahead, aligning His will with the Father’s and not His own.
A few facts about prayer:
- We can pray at anytime, anywhere. Remember Jonah? Y’all he prayed while in the belly of a great fish O_o. God isn’t confined to our little church buildings (no matter how big your sanctuary is, God is bigger).
- Prayer helps change the way we think. When we focus on God, our hearts can’t help but align itself with what pleases Him. (Don’t think about a white elephant.) Philippians 4:7-8
- We can pray about ANYTHING. That means anything from needing strength to forgive or help getting through traffic without turning in to a psychopath. If it matters to you…it matters to God. Philippians 4:6
- We can never ask more of God than what He can provide. Ephesians 3:20-21
- Still thinking about that white elephant? Want to go deeper with prayer? Check out Prayer 101 or Praying Back God’s Word Better yet, check out my friend Wendy Blight’s four week study called Cultivating a Heart of Prayer!
2. Feed your Spirit with God’s Word.
God’s Word is an incredible love story and from cover to cover it is filled with examples of how God desires us to live as His children. Sometimes those examples are in the form of what not to do, but through Christ, we have our perfect example. If you don’t know much about Jesus, I recommend curling up with one of the four Gospels which go through the birth, ministry, death, and resurrection of Jesus. This may help you choose which to read:
- Matthew: Written mainly to the Jews, uses the Old Testament and Jewish customs to help explain that Jesus is the Messiah. (This on is my fave.)
- Mark: This was written more for the Romans, doesn’t contain or explain many Jewish customs, and starts with Jesus’ ministry (skips His birth). Focuses on His divinity and what He did.
- Luke: Luke wrote this one for his friend Theophilus and, as a historian, Luke makes everything easy to understand so that we will be encouraged in our faith.
- John: Ok, this one is probably the easiest Gospel to understand since John kinda focused on reaching out to those who don’t know who Jesus is to begin with. (If you’re sharing a Gospel book with someone who doesn’t know Jesus at all, this would be the place to start.)
- Before you start thinking something strange, like I’m super smart for knowing all that, I had to look at my Bible notes to make sure I had the information correct (plus it’s something I teach on a regular basis). TIP: Take a look at the introductions at the beginning of each book of the Bible. Don’t have introductions? No worries, visit your local book store and check out the study Bibles.
3. Feed your Spirit with fellow Christians.
Remember as a kid all those lectures about “peer pressure” and avoiding the “wrong crowd?” Yeah…about that…it’s true. We have this habit of emulating those around us. So, like the poster I have in my classroom says…”Surround yourself with who you want to be.”
Participate in worship. Get yourself involved in a Bible study. Join a fellowship group at church, or start one of your own!
Let’s never underestimate the power of Christians getting together.
- Together, we can encourage one another in the faith. Hebrews 10:23-25
- When we fall or succumbs to sin, others can help us get back on track with God. Ecclesiastes 4:9-12
- It’s not just about strengthening each other spiritually, sometimes what you need is help with the physical. Acts 2:42-47
- When we get together, God is in out midst. Matthew 18:20
It’s your turn? How do you feed your Spirit? Is there something you do for each of the ones above or do you have three different ways you combat the flesh? I’d love to hear from you!