I spent last night apart from my son. My husband and I wanted to spend time with each other and also catch up on tasks that we were dragging behind. We decided it would be best for our son to spend the night with my mother-in-law. As I began preparing for the night, doubt emerged from unseen places. What if something happens to him and I’m not there to comfort him? What if he doesn’t want to come back to me? Am I even a good mother? These questions left me feeling anxious and uncertain about my decision. I knew it was important for my husband and I to have undivided quality time together. I also knew that I needed to be rejuvenated and recharged so that I could continue being the mother Josiah needs. As I began praying, I was led to Psalm 1.
“Blessed is the one who does not walk in step with the wicked or stand in the way that sinners take or sit in the company of mockers, but whose delight is in the law of the Lord, and who meditates on his law day and night. That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither— whatever they do prospers.”
Psalm 1:1-3 NIV
The Lord reassured me that as long as I walk in His ways and I plant myself underneath Him, I will be prosperous as a mother. He will give providence over the life of my son. It’s so important to cast our cares unto the Lord because He truly and deeply loves us. (1 Peter 5:7) He desires for us to trust Him in all areas of our lives. As I surrender my emotions, I am able to be led by the Spirit.
Now I can’t say that being led by the spirit is easy. It does not FEEL good. If you are like me, then life is filtered through emotions. Emotions are healthy and allow for self expression; but when they are not controlled they can overwhelm us and keep us apart from God.
“For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want.”
Galatians 5:17 NIV
A life led by the spirit is full of conflict! It involves serious meditation and reflection of the word. It demands us to go against what feels normal. I did not feel peace as I packed my son’s overnight bag. I did not feel peace on the car ride to my mom-in-law’s house. Peace came to me after I kissed him goodbye. In spite of how I felt I pressed into God. This simple event shaped my understanding of living in the Spirit. I wrestled with my flesh and spoke the victory I have already acquired over my life.
There is great reward to a life led by the Spirit. We are assured life and peace. We can enter into rest. I could have dwelled in my emotions and allow worry to hang over me. If I allowed my emotions to control me then I would not have been able to laugh and indulge in fruitful conversation with my husband. I would have missed my chance to enjoy time for myself. Most importantly I would have missed time in the presence of God. Being led by the Spirit opens us to His presence.
I pray that you and I daily choose spirit over flesh. As we deny ourselves and lift Christ up,our ultimate goal of eternal life becomes clear.
May you live in the Spirit and be rewarded with His joy and peace.