Getting around from place to place these days is a lot easier than it used to be. As we all know, the shortest distance between two places is a straight line. This is true in the physical world and in the spiritual world. Walking in the Spirit means walking the “straight and narrow”. There is no wavering or wandering off of the path. If you are following more than one leader you become inconsistent and easily get “off course.”

Getting off course can cost lots of time and energy.

Remember how it took 40 years for the Israelites to make it through the desert? Have you ever looked at a map of the area? From the bird’s eye view, it is hard to even imagine how it could possibly take so long.

The Spirit of God is not only a disciplining parent but also a demanding coach who pushes us to our limits and requires our lives to be disciplined. Although we may not feel strong enough to push on to victory, we will be able to accomplish it as we follow Christ and draw on his strength. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Phil 4:13. Then we can use our growing strength to help those around us who are weak and struggling.

Remember this is true in the spiritual and in the physical world.

God said it through the prophet Isaiah this way:

Isaiah 40:3-5 Isaiah 40:3-5New International Version (NIV)

A voice of one calling:
“In the wilderness prepare
    the way for the Lord[a];
make straight in the desert
    a highway for our God.[b]
Every valley shall be raised up,
    every mountain and hill made low;
the rough ground shall become level,
    the rugged places a plain.
And the glory of the Lord will be revealed,
    and all people will see it together.
For the mouth of the Lord has spoken.”

God said it through the book of Hebrews this way:

Hebrews 12:1-13

12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.

God Disciplines His Children

In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood. And have you completely forgotten this word of encouragement that addresses you as a father addresses his son? It says,

“My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
    and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
because the Lord disciplines the one he loves,
    and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”[a]

Endure hardship as discipline; God is treating you as his children. For what children are not disciplined by their father? If you are not disciplined—and everyone undergoes discipline—then you are not legitimate, not true sons and daughters at all. Moreover, we have all had human fathers who disciplined us and we respected them for it. How much more should we submit to the Father of spirits and live! 10 They disciplined us for a little while as they thought best; but God disciplines us for our good, in order that we may share in his holiness. 11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

12 Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees. 13 “Make level paths for your feet,”[b] so that the lame may not be disabled, but rather healed.

Whatever doesn’t line up with your calling, faith, convictions, and purpose you eliminate from your life. Eliminate it from your actions, words, and thoughts. In other words, “don’t go there.”

When you walk in the Spirit, everything lines up; your actions, faith, life and heart. Because of this you become good, upright, pleasant, and prosperous. Both you and the world see the change. You become the shining light that gives the example for good for others to follow.

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