"For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another. For the whole law is fulfilled in one word: 'You shall love your neighbor as yourself.' " - Galatians 5:13-14 ESV
I think of the man who didn't have a father or had a broken father/son relationship that is now faced with the reality of being a father himself. This passage gives us hope that we can transcend what we have experienced.
"But if you bite and devour one another, watch out that you are not consumed by one another. But I say, walk by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the flesh. 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, to keep you from doing the things you want to do. But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law." - Galatians 5:15-18 ESV
I always found this biting and devouring portion interesting. What is this caution about consumption? See that you don't... what?
It basically is saying that we should recognize potential toxic relationships and avoid the pitfalls of these relationship triggers. Notice how it doesn't say avoid toxic people or to surround yourself with people who support you and get rid of anyone else. It says, 'Walk by the Spirit.' if we do then when the button is pushed that would have set us off it doesn't because we have a liberty that transcends the law.
"For Christ is the end of the law for righteousness to everyone who believes." - Romans 10:4 ESV
He really is. Otherwise we set rules and hold others to those rules trying to live treating others along the lines we deem important and end up chewing other people up. No one wins when this happens.
"There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus. For the law of the Spirit of life has set you free in Christ Jesus from the law of sin and death." - Romans 8:1-2 ESV
Oh. What a great passage this is. I love it so much. The birds start singing in my heart.
We are free now! We are free to treat others as we wish to be treated. We are able to be the friend we would like to have. The fatherless man has liberty to be a fine father. We can serving by love with attention to the fact that the needs we sense in ourselves are a mirror of all human need.
"Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father. Whatever you ask in my name, this I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son." - John 14:12-13 ESV
Wow. This is because we are free to walk by the Spirit. These great things happen in light happy places and in dark frozen ones also. We have liberty and walking in it glorifies the Son.