The challenge of living by the Spirit

Tuesday, February 7, 2012 10:11 PM, CST


The challenge of living by the Spirit

Hope you have had a week filled with joy and contemplation.

We have never been through anything quite like this, where one minute we are filled to the brim, ready to burst into tears, and the next we are experiencing great Peace, Rest and Joy.

Gratefulness and sadness; anger and contentment overlap multiple times in a day. We never know what’s coming next.
Sometimes it feels like a roller coaster, because it is………

In my contemplation about what to write this week, I was touched, once again, by a passage in Galatians 5. In the middle of counseling a couple, this afternoon, Jeff started reading Galatians 5:18- 25. I sat there, taking it all in, and was reminded of the battle between the flesh and the Spirit. Gosh how I am struggling with this… a greater degree than ever before.

It struck me that this battle is always a challenge, and is hard, but at times it seems harder than others, doesn’t it?

Hard? During these last couple of months, at times, even when we have wanted to (and “know” all the right answers), it has seemed impossible to live by the Spirit.

Don’t we all struggle with this?

As Paul talks about in Romans, “we know what to do, but continue to do what we don’t want to do.”

Thank goodness we have Jesus to carry us, huh? It is only through Him that we can live out the fruit of the Spirit. In order to do that we must first know what the fruit of the Spirit is: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faith, gentleness, and self-control. (Galatians 5: 22-23).

Meditate on these. Don’t they give you a Peace beyond understanding?

We have had some good days and some bad days this past week. But what God reminded me of today is to get back to praying for myself, and for my family, that we be filled to the brim each day with the fruit of the Spirit. Living by the flesh is easy. But living out the fruit of the Spirit takes a dependence on Jesus. That’s the only way we can do it.

Will you pray for us, as we pray for you, to be saturated by the fruit of the Spirit?

Until next week,

P.S. Thank u all for every sweet message and post! WE appreciate them more than you know. Thanks for letting God use you.

Jeff & Cheryl Scruggs

Jeff and Cheryl Scruggs are authors, speakers, and Biblical counselors, not LPC's. Their writings include the widely used book I Do Again, which chronicles their thirty-year story of marriage, betrayal, infidelity, divorce, emotional damage and scarring, forgiveness, reconciliation, trust, and remarriage to each other. Jeff and Cheryl are the founders of Hope Matters Marriage Ministries in Dallas. They speak at conferences and weekend worship services in churches across the nation, sharing their love story of hope, redemption, restoration, and God taking hold of their lives. See their website:

This Post Has 2 Comments

  1. Marlys Zee

    Thank you so much for your encouragement through all your pain! I have followd your messages and am touched by your faith. I have been praying for healing for Lauren and strenght for you and your family. The warmth that you give out will be released back to you manyfold.

    God Bless!


  2. Keith C. Brown

    Dear Cheryl,
    Thank you for continuing faithfully on your journey. Thank you for keeping the faith when Satan would pull you away, Christ continues to draw you in to his loving embrace. Thank you for your courage to allow yourself to be continually drawn closer into the perfecting power of our God. For through your struggle God’s grace is revealed in your tears that give way to those sounds of joy. We share the journey with you. For we too cry, and we too know joy. And we know it all the more, because you have shared both the tears and the joy with the rest of us. And for those of us who share life in Christ, we call that grace. I can’t help but to think that the more we know of grace, the more we know God. Thank you for allowing us to see the grace of God in you. Might we all have a faith like yours.
    An old friend, and fellow-servant,

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