Do you ever find yourself struggling to live out the life of a Christ follower? Is it ever hard for you to be a “good Christian?”

The truth is that you cannot live the Christian life — not on your own, and not in your power. Only one man was perfect enough to live the Christian life. He was so good that they named it after Him — Jesus Christ!

I remember a friend telling me once, “I am a Christian. I just screw up a lot.” While not the most reverent phrase, I must confess I laughed at their honesty. I could also relate that I mess up a lot. This is not something I share as an excuse but offer more as a confession.

Many of us want to follow Jesus, but we fall short. Let’s face it, we have been called to walk in the footsteps of the only perfect man ever. Jesus had no sin, no hurts, no bad habits and no hang-ups in life. As Christians, we are in a sense told to stop all of our bad behavior. It’s just not quite that easy.

So how is an imperfect person supposed to live this life? The apostle Paul tells us how: “So I say walk by the Spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature” (Galatians 5:16). The true Gospel of Christ does not just offer us the forgiveness of sins and a home in heaven. These are a part of the package, but the Gospel also offers us the power of the Holy Spirit who enables us and frees us to fully love and obey God.

The Holy Spirit is part of the Trinity with God the Father and the Son. Jesus told the disciples he was going to leave them but promised to send the Holy Spirit as our Helper (John 14:16,17). The Holy Spirit is the presence of Jesus with us and in us. Jesus called him “the Helper” because we needed his help. The power of the Spirit gives us the help we need to overcome sin and follow Christ. To walk in the Spirit, we must understand that the Spirit is walking around in us if we are Christ followers.

The phrase “walk” in/by the Spirit implies two things: a lifestyle and a relationship. To walk by the Spirit implies that Christ followers should live a lifestyle that is filled and empowered by the Spirit of God. God knew we could not live out a life pleasing to Him in our own strength and power. The Holy Spirit was given to us as our helper and guide.

To walk in the Spirit also implies a relationship. It speaks of the personal nature of the Spirit’s role in our lives. We are called to walk with the One who is walking inside of us.

One of the great joy and discoveries of my life is that when I received Christ, it was not just a power that came into my heart. It was not a rule that came into my heart.

It was a person, the person of the Holy Spirit. I want to learn to let the Holy Spirit become my best friend and guide. To walk in the Spirit means you are growing in an intimate understanding of and relationship with this person who lives within.

The apostle Paul said, “Walk in the Spirit and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature.” Paul gives us the key to overcoming our hurts, habits, and hangups. The key to defeating our sin is not by trying to defeat and overcome our sin.

You are not strong enough to overcome your sin. The key to overcoming sin is to walk in the Spirit. Keep your eyes fixed upon Jesus, and surrender to the power of His Spirit in your life.

As you seek Him and surrender to Him, the Spirit will give you strength to say no to your sinful desires. Are you ready to walk with the One who is walking inside of you? And that’s the Word.

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