17 For the flesh desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the flesh. They are in conflict with each other, so that you are not to do whatever you want. 18 But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under the law.
These verses take a bit of getting your head around – Paul’s mode of speech takes a little getting used to, even the apostle Peter found him confusing at times! I think the crux of it is that we have a choice. As believers, we can try to do good under our own strength but that’s like following the Old Testament Law, and we know that sooner or later we will slip up and give in to our fallen nature (‘the flesh’). This goes against what God wants for us. Alternatively, we can seek to let the Spirit guide us and work through us. He knows just what God wants and is able to lead us that way. Put like that, there’s no choice really is there!
Spirit, I make you my guide today, lead me towards God and his ways!