From Rebecca: My friend Amy Bechtel Kimball has written a book that resonates with the work I do here and in my Untwisting Scriptures series. It’s all about our loving God’s REAL heart for you and who you REALLY are in our Lord Jesus Christ.

One of the first things I thought, years ago when I began learning these things, was “Why aren’t more people talking about this? Why don’t I hear about it more?”

I set out to change that, and I’m always so glad to see others who have the same goal.

You can see Amy’s book at Amazon and at her website, here. Here is an excerpt from chapter 7.

Walking in the Flesh Vs. Walking in the Spirit

These are Christian buzzwords, aren’t they?

Do we even know what they mean for certain? Do we hear, ‘walk in the Spirit and not in the Flesh’ and feel a sense of duty and maybe even guilt and shame because we aren’t sure if we are doing it right?

Do we constantly wonder if we are, in this very moment, walking in the Spirit or the Flesh? Does this cause some spiritual stress in our lives?

Before God changed my mind, I lived my life on a hamster wheel, running and getting nowhere, striving to please God, striving to repent, striving to have faith, striving to walk in the Spirit, and not in the Flesh.

The funny thing? Striving IS walking in the Flesh because we are relying on self-works. Learning to receive puts me in a posture of yielding, humility, and fully relying on His Work and not my own works. This is how I “enter His rest.”

Philippians 3:2-6 Beware of the dogs, beware of the evil workers, beware of the false circumcision; for we are the true circumcision, who worship in the Spirit of God and glory in Christ Jesus and put no confidence in the flesh, although I myself might have confidence even in the flesh. If anyone else has a mind to put confidence in the flesh, I have far more: circumcised the eighth day, of the nation of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of Hebrews; as to the Law, a Pharisee; as to zeal, a persecutor of the church; as to the righteousness which is in the Law, found blameless.

 According to Paul, walking in the Flesh is relying on the Law for righteousness.

Being a Pharisee meant that Paul followed all the laws of Moses as well as the extra rules the Pharisees added so they could be clean, holy, and blameless at all times. Circumcision was an outward sign of the covenant and required for all Jews. Being born an Israelite meant that he was part of God’s chosen people.

He was relying on his own works for righteousness.

In our time, putting our confidence in the Flesh might sound like this:

“If anyone else has a mind to put confidence in the Flesh, I have far more: I am a Christian, I attended church my whole life, served in church as a leader every Sunday, always volunteered for special events such as Vacation Bible School and Youth Camp, led many people to the Lord, followed all the recommendations by my pastor such as no tattoos, no alcohol, no smoking, and always dressed the right way for church services. I’ve never been divorced; my children are all obedient and everyone knows they can count on me any time a volunteer is needed.”

Walking in the Flesh is relying on ourselves for righteousness. Walking in the Flesh is relying on our obedience and our works.

Walking in the Spirit is relying on Jesus’ work on the cross for our righteousness. We are relying on His obedience. His works.

Does this mean we are to judge every good and examine ourselves to see if, moment by moment, we are walking in the Flesh or walking in the Spirit? Certainly not!

We do not strive and strain to walk in the Spirit. We confidently walk in our identity in Christ: clean, perfected, forgiven, holy, righteous. Since we died with Christ and now Christ lives in us, we can safely assume that we are always walking in the Spirit- unless the loving Father reveals to us that we are operating in our self-works.

At that moment, we remember that we died and we no longer live. Immediately we are walking in belief/ walking in the Spirit once more.

As God transforms our minds as we meditate on truth, we will find peaceful rest, knowing that we are already walking in the Spirit and that it’s as easy as relying on Jesus to do all the work!

The Power of Receiving

Let’s read an excerpt from Romans 5, looking closely at verse 17 [in bold].

For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life. And not only this, but we also celebrate in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received the reconciliation…For if by the offense of the one, death reigned through the one, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ. So then, as through one offense the result was condemnation to all mankind, so also through one act of righteousness the result was justification of life to all mankind… The Law came in so that the offense would increase; but where sin increased, grace abounded all the more, so that, as sin reigned in death, so also grace would reign through righteousness to eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Verse 17 tells us how we find victory now, in this life:

For if by the offense of the one, death reigned through the one, much more will those who receive the abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the One, Jesus Christ.

 This verse has transformed my life.

After years of striving to walk in the Spirit and striving to have victory in my life (in the areas mentioned in the preface), I learned to simply receive. My prayers changed from ‘help me have victory’ and ‘help me stop sinning’ to simply receiving.

I cannot emphasize enough the importance of this simple truth. When we receive from God, we are yielding. When we receive from God, He has room to work in/through us. When we receive from God, we are relying on His works and not our works.

My life completely changed when I began receiving. I began to have victories in areas of my life I had previously been defeated. I began to truly rest.

Learning to receive became power in my life – the power of the new creation.

You watch! You watch God work in your life when you start applying this principle! Instead of asking God to help you overcome sins/weaknesses in your life, begin speaking the truth and receiving overflowing grace and righteousness.

I have an image that helps me with this seemingly ethereal concept of receiving. I see a waterfall, which is a constant overflow of water, that gushes with such an overabundance, it literally falls off the edge. It is an overflow from an unending spring which is active, dynamic, and vigorous. God describes Himself as the fountain of living water.

Psalm 36:8-9 … And You give them to drink of the river of Your delights for with You is the fountain of life…

Psalm 87:7 … “All my springs [fountains] of joy are in you.”

Proverbs 10:11 The mouth of the righteous is a fountain of life…

God’s gifts to us are eternal, meaning they are never ending. His love, grace, mercy, lovingkindness, and joy are constantly being showered over us and in us, like a fountain springing forth, overflowing.

I like to start my day by envisioning this waterfall. I walk into it with my hands open, receiving all that God is pouring onto me.

“I receive your overflowing and abundant grace, love, mercy, kindness, righteousness. Give me opportunities to give these away to people I meet today.”

We receive these, and then with the overflow, we extend them to others.

Look back at Proverbs 10:11. Your mouth, as a righteous child of God, is a fountain of life! How powerful is that?! God’s words burst forth from you and bring life to those you relate to.

We are this grand vessel, a pitcher, if you can imagine it. We stand beneath the waterfall of overabundance, which fills our pitcher. Then we pour it onto those around us.

In this way, we do not need to be sucked dry when we minister to others. If we regularly spend time receiving from God, we are always giving from our overflow. My pastor, Rob Guiller, illustrates this idea by setting up wineglasses on the stage, stacked: three on the bottom, two on top of those, and one on top. Then he takes a pitcher (God) of water and begins pouring it into the top cup (me and you). As we receive the water from the source, it fills our cup and then begins to overflow into the cups of those around us.

John 7:38 The one who believes in Me, as the Scripture said, ‘From his innermost being will flow rivers of living water.’”

John 4:14 “but whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never be thirsty; but the water that I will give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up [Greek hallomai- leap, spring up, to jump; figuratively, to gush — leap, spring up] to eternal life.”

 In summary, as God transforms our minds so that we believe all that He has done, as we learn to stop striving, and as we learn to receive His gifts of grace and righteousness, we will see the abundant life. We will see victory in our stuck places. We will experience peace, joy, and rest.

A friend recently asked me, “Do you have victory in all those areas you wrote about in your preface?” Good question. It took me aback momentarily, because God has transformed my mind to the point where I don’t view victory the same as I did before. God has repented my mind to see victory in a different light.

Victory – Joy! I am finally filled with the joy of the Lord. Does that mean I don’t struggle with anxiety or depression sometimes? No, it does not. I do not worry, but for me, anxiety and depression are lingering effects in my body from past trauma and past prolonged stress. My default used to be deep, inner sadness and discontent with my progress as a Christian, with short bouts of joy and peace. Now my default is joy and peace, which is disrupted from time to time.

Victory – Freedom! I don’t feel stuck, unable to change. I am victorious over sin. I not only know I’m forgiven and righteous, I feel forgiven and righteous. I feel free!

Victory – Contentment! The pressure to constantly be better today than I was yesterday is gone. I can truly say that I am content with who I am and where I am – today, instead of waiting for contentment some elusive day in the future when I have all my ducks in a row.

I am no longer constantly striving for progress in specific areas of my life. I no longer give myself ‘progress reports’, constantly judging my ‘success’ in the areas of personal/spiritual growth.

For the most part, I’ve dropped my own measuring stick of success. I rest, knowing that if it’s important to God to change my behavior, He’ll change my mind about it.

I still bring things to Him with which I’m struggling, but those things no longer have prominence in my life like they used to. I ask Him to change my mind about the area, and then I just leave it alone.

Looking back, I see growth in some of those areas for sure, but ‘success’ in all areas of my life just isn’t important to me anymore. And that, in and of itself, is a huge victory.

Victory – Deep Knowing! I know that I know that I know that God is fully pleased with me. Today. Right now. Regardless of my behavior.

This statement is made from my personal experience, and as such, is reflective of my walking in the Spirit. ‘Regardless of my behavior’ refers to the fact that I don’t need to live under the filter of the famous Sunday School song, “Be careful little hands what you do… for the Father up above is looking down in love, so be careful little hands what you do.” I walk in confidence, in the Spirit, and do not need to worry about God being pleased with me based on my actions. He is pleased with me based on my righteousness, which is firm.

He is so big, and so powerful, and so God, that He will accomplish His purposes in me and using me for others exactly the way I am today. In/through my weaknesses or strengths. He does not need me to be better to use me more for His kingdom.

In other words, He is not waiting for me to be a more mature Christian in order to use me for Kingdom purposes. He can use me the way I am, today. It is a natural bi-product of walking in the Spirit to become more mature, but maturity, by itself, is not the goal. Walking with Jesus is the goal. I am able to trust Him to work the way He sees fit, with who I am, in this moment, today.


In my own books, at this website, and in my “Tiny Untwistings” emails to my subscribers, I love writing about how our God delights in His sons and daughters as we are now, and He delights to lovingly bring about continued transformations in and through His willing children.

I’m thankful Amy has learned and is proclaiming this good news of the Kingdom of our Lord Jesus Christ.




Go here to download your free Guide, How to Enjoy the Bible Again (when you’re ready) After Spiritual Abuse (without feeling guilty or getting triggered out of your mind). You’ll receive access to both print and audio versions of the Guide (audio read by me). I’m praying it will be helpful.

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x