The Source of Our Life and Power - The Warrior's Journey®

The Source of Our Life and Power

Author: Chaplain, COL Scott McChrystal, USA (Ret.)

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“So I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature.  … But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.  Against such things there is no law. … Since we live by the Spirit, let us keep in step with the Spirit” (Galatians 5:16, 22-23, 25) 

Dr. Paul Lee Tan tells the story of famed evangelist Dwight L. Moody when he was preaching on the need of believers to be filled with the Holy Spirit. Moody held up a delicate glass bottle and asked, “How can I get the air out of this glass bottle?” One man said, “Suck it out with a pump.” Moody replied, “That would create a vacuum and shatter the glass.” After many impossible suggestions, Moody finally smiled, picked up a pitcher of water, and filled the glass bottle. “There,” he said, “all the air is now removed.” He then went on to explain that victory over sin in the Christian life is not accomplished by “sucking out sin here and there,” but rather by being filled with the Holy Spirit. The Spirit’s presence in our lives is the source of our life and power. 

But the Holy Spirit does not only displace sin in our lives and leave no room for it. When we are filled with the Holy Spirit, He becomes the prevailing force in our lives. I used to live in the Texas Panhandle, and it was easy to discern the direction of the prevailing wind. How could I tell? All the trees across the Texas Panhandle were bent toward the north. The prevailing wind was out of the south. As the trees grew, that prevailing wind bent them all in one direction. Yes, the wind frequently changed directions. Sometimes it came out of the north, east, and west. The wind predominantly blew out of the south and inclined the trees in a northerly direction. 

This is what the Holy Spirit does in our lives. He steadily bends us in God’s direction. He inclines our hearts toward God. Temptation may blow us away from God from time to time. But as we continue to be filled with the Holy Spirit (Ephesians 5:18), He transforms our hearts into the image of Jesus Christ. He renews our hearts so that we will desire God’s will and have the power to do it (Ezekiel 36:26-27; Philippians 2:13).   

This is how we live the Christian life – by the Holy Spirit’s transforming and energizing power. As we lean upon the Holy Spirit to sustain and renew us, we will not gratify the lusts of the sinful nature. Instead we will starve the sinful nature into submission by denying its appetites. And the more we allow the Spirit to be the prevailing force in our lives, Christ’s image will be stamped more deeply and more permanently upon us. Instead of the evil deeds of the sinful nature, we will exhibit the godly fruit of the Spirit. 


  • Is it easier to push a car or to crank it up and drive it? In the same way isn’t it far easier to have the indwelling Holy Spirit motivating and empowering us, than relying on mere human effort to live the Christian life? 
  • Pray for the Lord to fill you with His Spirit and to motivate you from within. 

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