Living in the Light
1 Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do, because you are his dear children. 2 Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us[a] and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.
Father, it sounds so simple: imitate You in everything I do. And as I read Your Word I know better and better what You would do in every situation. So why don’t I do it? How hard is it for You to always be kind and loving? You rule the universe and have chosen to be forgiving and kind and loving. It must be the best and most satisfying way. Help me, Your dear child, to fulfill the plan You have for me and to live my life imitating You. Change me so this is my very nature.
3 Let there be no sexual immorality, impurity, or greed among you. Such sins have no place among God’s people. 4 Obscene stories, foolish talk, and coarse jokes—these are not for you. Instead, let there be thankfulness to God.
Father, all these sins are just the common way of the world, and all too often the common way for me. I wish I could say I never had an impure thought or act, but I can’t. There is no fooling You, and You have left no “wiggle room”. You are clear, there is to be none.
So what am I to do Father? I have struggled with this for what seems and eternity. I see Your command – be thankful. I will try, but You know how weak I am. Please Father, help me to turn to You in praise and thanksgiving when temptation calls. Help me to be thankful and speak Your praises instead of foolish talk or coarse jokes. Help!
5 You can be sure that no immoral, impure, or greedy person will inherit the Kingdom of Christ and of God. For a greedy person is an idolater, worshiping the things of this world.
6 Don’t be fooled by those who try to excuse these sins, for the anger of God will fall on all who disobey him. 7 Don’t participate in the things these people do.
Jesus, help make the change in me complete. I am still tempted. I still fall and go back to some of these things sometimes. These verses are scary Lord. Help! Keep me in Your hands. I think that now I am a saved person who sins sometimes (too often). But I know sin could consume me, it has in the past. Please Lord, help me run from the darkness into the light.
8 For once you were full of darkness, but now you have light from the Lord. So live as people of light! 9 For this light within you produces only what is good and right and true.
Jesus, fill me completely with Your light. I did live in darkness at one time. I still do in some ways. I know Your light produces what is good. I see it in the changes in my life. I still hold on to the darkness sometimes though. Fill me with light. Change me.
10 Carefully determine what pleases the Lord.
Holy Spirit, make it clear to me what pleases You, and give me the strength to do it, and only it. Open my mind and heart. Help me live and breathe to please You. Help me to carefully determine what pleases You.
11 Take no part in the worthless deeds of evil and darkness; instead, expose them.
Holy Spirit, I know You are calling me to root out every little spot of evil in my life – leave no part. No one trying to grow a good garden leaves a spot for weeds. Help me no to hide my sins, but to expose them. Help me to see this verse as for me – not for me to use it against others.
12 It is shameful even to talk about the things that ungodly people do in secret. 13 But their evil intentions will be exposed when the light shines on them, 14 for the light makes everything visible. This is why it is said,
“Awake, O sleeper,
rise up from the dead,
and Christ will give you light.”
Father, someday will everyone know all my awful sins? I am so ashamed, yet I go back to the sins again and again. Father, my only hope is You. I have not one good deed to show You that deserves anything from You. When the light falls on me and all my sins are shown I know I will only bow, admit my total failure, and beg for mercy through Jesus’ blood. What else can I do? Change me Lord.
Living by the Spirit’s Power
15 So be careful how you live. Don’t live like fools, but like those who are wise. 16 Make the most of every opportunity in these evil days. 17 Don’t act thoughtlessly, but understand what the Lord wants you to do.
Holy Spirit, open my eyes and strengthen my heart. I know what You want me to do in most situations…I just fail to do it, or not do what You don’t want me to do. Why am I so weak. I am living foolishly even though I know so much better. I need Your strength. Help me.
18 Don’t be drunk with wine, because that will ruin your life.
Father, I still drink too much sometimes don’t I. Not very often, but once in while, and I bring You shame. I occasionally do so many things I should never do. Why? I use to think I was such a good Christian and most other people were undisciplined and ungodly. Now I see life is difficult for us all and I am the least loving (Godly) of all.
Instead, be filled with the Holy Spirit, 19 singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs among yourselves, and making music to the Lord in your hearts.
Father, I need to replace my sin with You. I need to fill my life with praising and thanking You. If I spent my time pleasing You, temptation would not be a problem. Holy Spirit, fill me so I live through You every minute of every day.
20 And give thanks for everything to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Father, I know I am not near thankful enough. I spend so much time thinking about what I think I need or want, and so little time thinking about what You have already given me. I am sorry. I spend too much time being sorry instead of thankful too! You gave me Your son Jesus as a sacrifice for my sins, how can I not be thankful? You have given me Jesus’ very righteousness, for no reason I can think of. How can I not be thankful? Help me to live a life of praise and thanksgiving instead of whining and sorry. Praise You God and thank you forever amen.
Spirit-Guided Relationships: Wives and Husbands
21 And further, submit to one another out of reverence for Christ.
Jesus, I so often want to be the leader and not the servant. This is just the opposite of You. Help me to submit to those around me, to serve. Help me serve my co-workers, my wife, my kids, my friends and my enemies. Help me to stop getting and start giving respect to others.
22 For wives, this means submit to your husbands as to the Lord. 23 For a husband is the head of his wife as Christ is the head of the church. He is the Savior of his body, the church. 24 As the church submits to Christ, so you wives should submit to your husbands in everything.
25 For husbands, this means love your wives, just as Christ loved the church. He gave up his life for her 26 to make her holy and clean, washed by the cleansing of God’s word.[b] 27 He did this to present her to himself as a glorious church without a spot or wrinkle or any other blemish. Instead, she will be holy and without fault. 28 In the same way, husbands ought to love their wives as they love their own bodies. For a man who loves his wife actually shows love for himself. 29 No one hates his own body but feeds and cares for it, just as Christ cares for the church. 30 And we are members of his body.
Father, I don’t know how to do this. I’ve pretty much failed as a husband. I think I need more help here than anywhere else. I really don’t know how to make my wife feel loved. Please pass Your love for her through me. My love will never be enough for her. Make our marriage a Christian marriage and make our love Your love.
31 As the Scriptures say, “A man leaves his father and mother and is joined to his wife, and the two are united into one.”[c] 32 This is a great mystery, but it is an illustration of the way Christ and the church are one. 33 So again I say, each man must love his wife as he loves himself, and the wife must respect her husband.
Holy Spirit, I and my wife are one. Help me to be someone she is glad to be united with. Help me lead my family to You. Help me to love her as You love the church. We are not growing closer Lord. Help me Lord. Change me.