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Saturday, August 20, 2011

Spirit vs. Flesh

So the last few days have consisted of sleeping. Yep, sleeping. I guess that is the body's way of saying rest flesh! I am thankful that sleep has come easy and most days and nights are a blur now. I am wrestling with my spirit's desire to be active, social and in fellowship with friends and family. I do miss getting out and about. Due to my low levels of WBC and just recuperating from round 3 of chemo I have kept myself at bay from activities. This is not easy for me. I so desperately want to be with my friends at church and other social gatherings. I know God is close by and He loves me and hears my prayers. It is amazing! Yet the battle within rages on: spirit vs. flesh. So this has forced me to look further into this delima of mine. Although I am facing a battle that is physical -- the effects of toxic chemo poison in my body, I face another battle. The spiritual. The one that is not against flesh and blood. The one fought in the heavenly realms.

"We know that the law is spiritual; but I am unspiritual, sold as a slave to sin. I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do. And if I do what I do not want to do, I agree that the law is good. As it is, it is no longer I myself who do it, but it is sin living in me. I know that nothing good lives in me, that is in my sinful nature. For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out. For what I do is not the good I want to do; no, the evil I do not want to do - this I keep on doing. Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but the sin living in me that does it. So I find this law at work: When I want to do good, evil is right there with me. For in my inner being I delight in God's law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members. What a wretched man I am! Wh0 will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God - through Jesus Christ our Lord!"
Romans 7:13-25

To understand what I am going to write it imperative we are all on the same page. So for my greek minded friends and hermaneutaical experts here is my attempt at Biblical exposition. I am by no means an "expert" just a student seeking the truth...

It seems that I am faced more often than not - with choices. I can choose to be controlled by the law (flesh) or the law of the Spirit. If I set my mind on what the Spirit desires then peace abounds, but if my mind is set apart from the Spirit then chaos ensues. I can live in the Spirit or not. The choice is mine. The perplexity of this deepens as I ponder the wonder of how Christ set me free from the law of sin and death. The answer is contained in the cross. Here I find the Spirit of Sonship, a loving Father, privilege to be called a child of the King and co-heir of Christ. The chains are gone! I have been set free! With all these glorious benefits I get something else --the privilege of sharing in his sufferings so that I may share in his glory. So now it is making sense to me. The battle I face both in the physical and spiritual is for His glory. My present sufferings are not worth comparing to what is to come (future, as in heaven) but, what He is doing right now in me. What He is revealing to me now as I fight this battle before me. He has blessed me with every spiritual blessing (Ephesians 1:3) and equipped me to fight (Ephesians 6:10-18). So why do I find myself struggling? I must be continually filled with the Spirit in order to live in the Spirit. This requires work. (Galatians 5:16-18) This is not easy when the body (flesh) is not willing or when the Spirit wants to run and hide. According the Beth More, "The more we are filled with the Spirit, the more faith we can possess." I like that! I could use some more faith...without faith it is impossible to please God. I can ask God to increase my faith and confess my unbelief only to have Him grow my faith and stretch me even further. So I find myself on the doorstep of His courts. Thanking Him for the faith He has given me thus far and asking for an increase to make it even farther.
"Open the gates of righteousness; I will enter and give thanks to the Lord." Psalm 118:19

"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see" Hebrews 11:1