Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lords will is. Do not get drunk on wine, which leads to debauchery. Instead, be filled with the Spirit, speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Ephesians 5:17-19
On the Friday night before my final exams, I got drunk. As a first-year university student, I had avoided alcohol. But my roommate picked up some bottles of wine and we started drinking. Very quickly, the alcohol in my blood changed the way I talked, the way I walked, and my perception of the world around me. It controlled me.
It is interesting that Gods Word contrasts drunk with wine and filled with Gods Spirit. The issue is control. Its clear that being controlled by alcohol is unwise and, many times, leads to foolish destructive actions. Being filled, directed and empowered by Gods Spirit, on the other hand, allows God to change the way we respond to the world around us. The Bible describes these changes as fruit: the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians5:22-23).
As a student, I gladly invited God into my academic world but was more resistant to his involvement in my social life. I soon realized God is better at every area of life than I am. If I really wanted the best in life, it meant allowing Gods Spirit to be in control so he could direct and empower each area of my life.
From the moment of our spiritual birth, Gods Spirit lives in us, but we can limit his work in and through us. The key is to allow God to direct and empower each area of our lives by allowing the Holy Spirit to fill us. What are you being filled with?
Father, I realize that I have been attempting to be in control and my self-effort has robbed me of your wisdom and power. I confess my need for your Spirit to direct and empower each area of my life. I long to see the fruit of your Spirit produced in my life. Thank you for your love and forgiveness. Amen.
By Mike Woodard
Used by Permission
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