As a Christian, I have found that “talking the talk” requires a skill set of learning God’s Word and hearing the instructions of the Holy Spirit. On the other hand, I have also found that “walking the walk” is a completely separate entity and will take a lifetime of learning. Only Jesus could truly “walk the walk” because He was sinless; we, however, will never be. God knows that we have a lot to learn, and thankfully, He is willing and able to teach us, if only we will listen. Learning boils down to one thing: “Are we teachable?”
Being teachable is a condition of the heart – wanting to do what is right to please our Lord first before our self and others. Even if we don’t fully understand why we should do something, we do it anyway because God says we should and He knows best. The Bible says that we should not be wise in our own eyes and assume that we know everything. We must become humble and allow the Lord to teach us. There have been many times that I have fallen short of doing, saying and even thinking the right thing. Afterwards, when the Holy Spirit convicts me, I am really disgusted with myself and often wonder, “What is my problem?” “The problem” is usually pride rearing its ugly head, wanting to prove something or be superior in some way. I have stumbled on my ego and in retrospect I can see what a problem it really is. God dislikes the proud and He warns us that “pride goes before destruction and a haughty spirit before a fall.” (Proverbs 16:18)
One main tool that I think a Christian needs to “walk the walk” is a spirit of discernment. The ability to know when something is not right gives us the proper tool we need to reject it. Sometimes when we are being tempted, we feel a strong urge to sin because it feels good emotionally. Temptation plays on our emotions and flesh and is a powerful force against us if we are not properly equipped to deal with it. The ability to discern how the enemy is attacking us is a great gift and enables us to see our weaknesses. After we have identified the enemy’s attack, we have to use our mind to stop it. If we are allowing the Holy Spirit to change us into the image of Christ by renewing our mind on a daily basis, we will be equipped to fight back. Our mind will immediately tell us what to do and what not to do…and the Spirit will back it up with His truth. The “key” is to be teachable and let the Lord renew our mind on a daily basis. There is an old Japanese adage that says: “A king seeks the power of the sword, the jewel and the mirror.” The sword is military might…the power of weapons, the jewel represents riches and the mirror is the ability of self-reflection and self-knowledge. The importance of the mirror is what I want to focus on here. Unless we can see into our self and identify our weaknesses and correct them, the enemy will always try to use them to destroy us. So, discernment of all things, including the self, is very important in “walking the walk”. We gain discernment when our mind is being renewed by the Lord and His Word; this is our basis of knowing right from wrong.
“Walking the walk” means imitating Christ by thinking and being like Him. There will be many situations in life when we really should ask our self, “What would Jesus do?” He wants us to be rooted and grounded in love, as perfect love casts out all fear. When we allow the Lord to teach us His ways we can start to live the resurrected life that we have in Him. We will truly start to exhibit the behavior that is born from above. We ask the Lord to lead us every single time that we pray, “Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” This is accomplished when we allow the Holy Spirit to work through us – only then can we truly “walk the walk”.
Jesus said, “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the earth. Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be filled. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. Blessed are those who are persecuted because of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when people insult you, persecute you falsely and say all kinds of evil against you because of Me. Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you ( Matthew 5:3-12).”
Marisa is a contributing writer for The Good News, in addition to several other publications. Her published works can be read at: wordslingergal.wordpress.com, and she can be contacted at MarisaC@GoodNewsFL.com.