“My Heart Is Awake” (Galatians 5: 16, ESV) by Carley Evans

The answer is simple. “Walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh.”

“By faith Moses, when he is grown up, refuses to be called the son of Pharaoh’s daughter, choosing rather to be mistreated with the people of God than to enjoy the fleeting pleasures of sin. He considers the reproach of Christ greater wealth than the treasures of Egypt, for he is looking to the reward.” (Hebrews 11: 24 – 26)

“For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other.” (Galatians 5: 17)

“And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.” (Galatians 5: 24)

Yet, “I sleep, but my heart is awake. A sound! My beloved is knocking, ‘Open to me, my sister, my love, my dove, my perfect one, for my head is wet with dew, my locks with the drops of the night.’ I put off my garment; how can I put it on? I have bathed my feet; how can I soil them? My beloved puts his hand to the latch, and my heart is thrilled within me. I arise to open to my beloved, and my hands drip with liquid myrrh, my fingers with liquid myrrh, on the handles of the bolt.” (Song of Solomon 5: 2 – 5)

“A Life Of Love” (Ephesians 5: 1 – 2, NIV) by Carley Evans

Paul calls us “to live a life of love.” We are to “be imitators of God.”

“Then Mary takes about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she pours it on Jesus’ feet and wipes His feet with her hair. And the house is filled with the fragrance of the perfume.” (John 12: 3)

Mary loves Jesus. As she shows Him her love, the fragrance of her act fills the house. Everyone is privy to the redolence of her life of love. Only Jesus’ betrayer protests.

Jesus washes Peter’s feet as well as the feet of His other disciples. “Do you understand what I have done for you? You call Me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I Am. Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.” (John 13: 12 – 15)

Jesus calls us to “love each other as I have loved you.” (John 15: 12) He calls us to imitate God — God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit. God, who loves Himself and who loves us enough to give up Himself to death, to death on a tree.

“For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: ‘You shall love your neighbor as yourself.’ ” (Galatians 5: 14, ESV)