More than sixteen years ago, Leigh-Ann came into my life for good. We had dated for more than three years, but nothing we did together as a dating couple could compare with the transformation that began on our wedding day.

We committed to love each other in sickness and health.

We committed to live together for the rest of our lives.

We committed before God to stay faithful to each other.

I can’t even begin to tell you how much better my life is because of the presence of Leigh-Ann.

Together we have five kids, one dog and no regrets. We have created memories and started traditions that will become a heritage we will leave to our grandkids.

I have to be honest…the addition of Leigh-Ann to my life has inspired me to grow in my Christian faith, pushed me to do risky things (foster, adopt, church plant, fix up a foreclosure, admit my faults, zip line in Mexico), helped me to be a better communicator (still have plenty of room for improvement though :)), and challenge me to look forward and not behind.

The addition of a wife to the life of a selfish man has not been without its difficulties. Imagine two very stubborn people who have learned life differently having to come together and figure it out peacefully. Our marriage has had plenty of “sharpening” moments. Times when the work of “becoming one” seemed insurmountable. Looking back though, I can say, “no pain, no gain.”

Don’t get me wrong, she still has plenty of work to do. I still have a habit of leaving my clothes by the bed, I need to compliment her more, get better at communicating my love and stop chewing so loudly :).

I could talk more about our marriage…but I want to use this to illustrate the sermon for Sunday from Romans 8:5-9. The bottom line is that instead of adding a spouse to our life, those who are followers of Christ have had God added to our lives. Specifically, we have been given the Holy Spirit.

Similar to adding a spouse, the addition of the Holy Spirit will certainly make us better people. He will guide, teach, shepherd, coax and convict us to desire Him more and more and as a result we will become more and more like Him.

There will be times when it seems like we are fighting with the Spirit as we are coaxed in our spiritual growth. There will be plenty of moments when it seems like we ignore the Spirit more than we welcome Him. There will be plenty of failure along the way…but there will be plenty of progress too.

A life that has been invaded by the Holy Spirit is the only way to live.