Each of us is responsible for our own “house.” Will you build yours up in Christ or tear yours down by living for yourself? It’s a daily decision.
Proverbs 14:1 The wise woman [or man] builds her house, but with her own hands the foolish one tears hers down.
The Spirit leads–He doesn’t push or drag. It may seem like He does sometimes, but He is the Perfect Gentleman; He will never force us to do something against our own will. The entire purpose of giving us Choice is so that we will choose to follow Him of our own accord. Our obedience must be voluntary and because we love Him; otherwise, it can be construed as coercion. If God wanted to manipulate us to do His will, then why allow the world to be in the shape it is?
God wants us to love Him and follow Him freely, so much so that His Plan of Salvation is what it is:
- He provided His own blood as a substitute for mankind BEFORE He created the world;
- He created mankind in His own image: with the choice of Who to serve;
- He allowed Adam and Eve to fail;
- He sent His Son to provide a way for us to be reunited with Him;
- He sent the Spirit so that we can NEVER be separated from Him again!
Even with the Spirit within us, we must choose to listen for Him, and then listen to Him. His vocabulary IS the Word of God. We MUST know His language in order to understand Him. Also, the more we put His words into practice, the more understanding we receive. I can tell a person how to hit a baseball, but until he holds a bat and that ball is coming at him will he really begin to know what it’s all about. And then, when he hits one–POW– understanding really sinks in! Put him in a batting cage for a few weeks, and he’ll really get it–but there’s nothing like a real game for it all to come together in his mind and body!
We could take each of the fruit of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control-Galatians 5:22-23) and put them in the place of that ball.
We could take each of the attributes of God (compassionate, gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness, forgiving wickedness, rebellion and sin-Exodus 34:6-7) and put them in the place of that ball.
We could take each of the lessons from James (about being doers and not hearers only, taming the tongue, etc.) and put them in the place of that ball.
The point is that WE must take the initiative. The Spirit within us calls to us, but He won’t make us do them, nor will He grant them to us without us asking and then learning them. The knowledge talked about in the Bible is experiential knowledge. We learn through experiencing.
Let’s experience Him today as we put into practice the things we read in His Word and know in our hearts what to do to be like Him.