Romans 8:1–2, 5

Only God’s Spirit can take the barrenness of our lives and bring a refreshing spirit renewal and joy.

I can’t exaggerate the relentless reality of sin or the refreshing power of the Holy Spirit. The best way I know how to explain it is to invite you on a mental journey with me to far west Texas. Hot, arid, dusty west Texas—where you can see nothing but flat, brown wilderness. As we journey into the northern part of New Mexico the land space slowly changes until you reach the historic Santa Fe Trail. The pass climbs up, up, up to seven thousand feet until you get to the eastern side of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains on the Colorado border—suddenly everything’s green and you’re gazing at the majestic snow-capped peaks of the Rocky Mountains. It’s absolutely exhilarating.

So it is when we move from the dry barrenness of sin’s wilderness to the lush, green magnificence of life in the Spirit.

Paul exclaims:

Now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.... Those who are dominated by the sinful nature think about sinful things, but those who are controlled by the Holy Spirit think about things that please the Spirit. (Romans 8:1–2, 5)

That’s how you move from living in the wasteland of the flesh to experiencing the ongoing grandeur of the Spirit. The Spirit not only takes over control but washes away the dust of sin and brings new life, fresh perspective, divine enablement, and great joy! Still feel stuck in the monotonous wilderness of powerlessness and defeat? Life doesn’t have to be that way! The Spirit invites you up, up, up to soaring heights of power and life-giving freedom.


Devotional content taken from Good Morning, Lord...Can We Talk? by Charles R. Swindoll. Copyright © 2018. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, a Division of Tyndale House Ministries. All rights reserved.