The Apostle Paul - “So I say, let the Holy Spirit guide your lives. Then you won’t be doing what your sinful nature craves. The sinful nature wants to do evil, which is just the opposite of what the Spirit wants. And the Spirit gives us desires that are opposite of what the sinful nature desires.” (Galatians 5:16-17)
Have you ever noticed how some people get really foolish when they’ve consumed too much alcohol? One man was at a party on the roof of a house and had overindulged on alcoholic beverages. He stood boldly before his friends and announced, “I believe I can fly.” Even though most of his friends laughed at him, he ran to the edge of the roof and jumped over the side, flapping his arms wildly. He fell to the ground below where he landed on the driveway. His right leg instantly broke. Later, when one of his drinking buddies came to visit him in the hospital, he asked his friend, “Why didn’t you try to stop me?” His friend replied, “I was so drunk, I thought you really could fly!”
When someone is drunk, they are seemingly out of control, but that’s not really true. During intoxication, they aren’t being controlled by their morals, rational thoughts, or their physical faculties. Instead, they are being controlled by the power of alcohol. The Apostle Paul writes “Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life. Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit.” (Ephesians 5:18) Paul is helping us understand that God says to us, “I don’t want your behavior or your life to be controlled by wine or by any other thing or person or philosophy other than Me.” God doesn’t want our lives to be controlled by alcohol, drugs, ungodly people, circumstances, anything or anyone else. He wants our lives to be controlled and led by the Holy Spirit.
When we are filled with the Holy Spirit, we are directed by the Holy Spirit. Alcohol affects how we think, feel, and act; but God’s Spirit wants to guide how we think, feel, and act. On the day of Pentecost, “The Holy Spirit took control of everyone.” (Acts 2:4 CEV) The Holy Spirit took control of people throughout the Bible and gave them direction and most often they followed His direction. Luke shares one example in Acts 16. He writes “Paul and Silas traveled through the area of Phrygia and Galatia, because the Holy Spirit had prevented them from preaching the word in the province of Asia at that time. They headed north for the province of Bithynia, but again the Spirit of Jesus did not allow them to go there.” (Acts 16:6-7) Paul and Silas were sensitive to the direction of the Holy Spirit and obeyed His voice. When the Holy Spirit is in control of our lives, we will respond to His direction as well.
Followup Activity - In your journal or on a piece of paper, write out a prayer to the Lord, asking Him to fill you with the power of His Holy Spirit and to guide how you think, feel, and act. If you are leading your family through this devotion, guide each family member to write their own prayer following the guidelines above.
Prayer for Today - Lord, won’t you please direct me by the power of Your Holy Spirit. In Jesus’ name, Amen.