Together in Christ: 'Leading the Dance of Life' — Ephesians 4:23-24

Friday, May 13, 2022

Instead [of going back to our old way of worldly living], let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God — truly righteous and holy.

— Ephesians 4:23-24 NLT

Key Thought

Our Scriptures on relationship have focused on our relationship with our Holy God for several days. However, we must not think that deepening our relationship with the Father doesn't have many practical impacts on our other relationships. We are God's special people chosen to bring His goodness to others. Our relationship with God changes the purpose of our relationship with unbelievers: we are to bring them the grace, light, and life of God! [1] It also changes the purpose of our relationship with other believers: we are to encourage, comfort, and correct each other so that we mature together in Christ. [2] These truths have been the underlying theme of the last several days.

Today, however, I want to invite you into an intimate personal relationship with the Holy Spirit. While there are many beautiful realities about our lives with the Holy living inside us, I want to imprint our hearts with one precious and glorious image today.

In Paul's letter to the Galatians, he taught about being led by the Holy Spirit. The Spirit's presence inside us became intensely personal when we put on Christ in baptism as the Spirit made us God's children, [3] cleansed us from sin, [4] and made a home inside us, to be with us until we go home to God. The Spirit is our guarantee that we are God's children [5] and enables us to pray as God's beloved children, addressing Almighty God as our Abba Father. [6] The Spirit intercedes for us even when we can't speak intelligible words, making our requests known and aligning them to the will of the Father. [7] As the Spirit lives in us, God is forming spiritual fruit in our lives that help us be more like Jesus. [8] Paul closed out his teaching on the Holy Spirit in Galatians 5 by leaving us this beautiful image:

Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit's leading in every part of our lives. [9]

This is what Paul is telling us in our relationship verse for today when he says, "let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes... created to be like God — truly righteous and holy." As we draw near to the Spirit, we can invite the Spirit to inform our decisions, aid our understanding of the Scriptures, and deal with life's challenges. The Holy Spirit is God's presence within us to empower, bless, equip, and lead us.

I love viewing life as a dance with the Holy Spirit as my dance partner — the one Who leads me in this dance. As one translation says, "Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit." [10] Let's ask the Holy Spirit to take the lead in our lives and "let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes." We have no closer relationship than the one we have with the Holy Spirit Who lives inside us. So, let's lean in and whisper to our Dance Partner, "Spirit, lead me in my dance of life, and I will follow wherever You lead!"

[1] 1 Peter 2:9-10, 3:13-16.
[2] Romans 14:1-3, 15:32; 2 Corinthians 13:11; 1 Thessalonians 4:18, 5:11.
[3] John 3:3-7; Galatians 3:26-26; Titus 3:3-7.
[4] 1 Corinthians 6:9-11; 1 Peter 1:2.
[5] 2 Corinthians 1:22, 5:5; Ephesians 1:14, 4:30.
[6] Romans 8:14-18; Galatians 4:4-7.
[7] Romans 8:26-27.
[8] Galatians 5:22-23.
[9] Galatians 5:26 NLT.
[10] Galatians 5:26 NIV.

Today's Prayer

Spirit of the living God, please take the lead in the dance of my life. Renew my thoughts and attitudes by Your presence, restore me with Your comfort, and transform me and make me new to live more like Jesus. O, God, thank You for being present in me, always, through the Holy Spirit. I thank you, in the name of Jesus my Lord Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • Galatians 5:13-16
  • Ephesians 1:16-18, 3:14-21

Comments

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Illustration

Illustration of Ephesians 4:23-24 NLT — Instead [of going back to our old way of worldly living], let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes. Put on your new nature, created to be like God — truly righteous and holy.

About This Devotional

Together in Christ is a daily devotional that focuses on what Scripture teaches about godly living in relationships.

'Together in Christ' is written by Phil Ware.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.