Matters of Faith: Put Your Best Foot Forward

By Rev. J. Loren Russell

25 If we [claim to] live by the [Holy] Spirit, we must also walk by the Spirit [with personal integrity, godly character, and moral courage—our conduct empowered by the Holy Spirit]. 

Galatians 5:25 (Amplified Bible) 

The idiomatic expression, “put your best foot forward,” was first recorded in 1613 and came from the pen of Sir Thomas Overbury; “Hee is still setting the best foot forward.” The saying implies that a person is putting forth his or her best effort at whatever he or she engages. Putting your best foot forward requires intentionality of effort and of purpose. 

The scripture text challenges us with the conjunction “if.” In other words, just because people say they live by the Holy Spirit of God does not mean that they automatically do. That little “if” puts the ownness on us to put our best foot forward and let our walk reflect our faith. If we believe that we are filled with the Holy Spirit, then we are charged to live with integrity, godly character, moral courage and unreproachable conduct. We can’t just talk the talk, we must walk the walk. 

Those who are looking from the outside only know what they see. If our walk is anything but godly, there would be no encouragement for them to change their lives. It’s an obligation we have “if” we are going to be living examples of a Holy and righteous God. 

As we approach the holiday and holy-day season, I recognize that there is a debt we owe to each other. “If” we pay that debt, it will enrich the recipient as well as the giver. It will satisfy every spiritual law and reveal the presence of the Holy Spirit in our lives. The debt we owe is to simply love one another. Paul writes in Romans 13:8, “Owe no one anything except to love one another, for he who loves another has fulfilled the law.”

“If” we claim to live by the spirit of God, we should love one another. When we love one another, we reflect the unconditional love of God that Paul spoke of when he wrote;“God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

When we love one another, we are putting our best foot forward, paying the debt we incurred when we willingly walked into a relationship with Christ. Your walk should inspire others to replicate your walk of “personal integrity, godly character, and moral courage.”

Put your best foot forward. 

Be Blessed!

Rev. J. Loren Russell is President/CEO of The JLR Company for Church Financial Strategy & Consulting; an associate minister at both Goodwill and The Greater Universal Baptist Churches in the Bronx; and creator & host of “Matters of Faith – The Radio Show” Mondays 8:00 – 10:00 PM. Listen on Matters of Faith on Facebook LIVE.

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