Week Twenty One
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.
Quote from Pray While You’re Prey:
“the Bible says, we will have battles between the Spirit and our flesh constantly.”
There is a Cherokee legend called two wolves that says:
An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. "A fight is going on inside me," he said to the boy.
"It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil - he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego." He continued, "The other is good - he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you - and inside every other person, too."
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, "Which wolf will win?"
The old Cherokee simply replied, "The one you feed."
As Christians, we can apply this principle to the spirit and the flesh. The Bible warns us that they will constantly be in conflict. The spirit wants to live in obedience and the joy of salvation; the flesh wants to live in opulence and the justification of sin.
The battle is not always over something huge like whether to pray or to party or whether to shout to the Lord or give a shout out to your favorite booty call. Some battles take place deep within and are more subtle. For example, I often experience the battle for peace of mind. The spirit wants to be content with what I have. The spirit knows that God is in control and that He has a plan for me. The flesh wants to focus on what I do not have, and sometimes, what others have. The flesh wants me to feel that God has abandoned me; that He has left me alone.
When these battles rage on, I often end up in tears. The tears are expressions of pain for the fact that I have allowed so much nonsense to enter into my flesh, through my eyes and my ears, that it sometimes feel like the flesh is just kicking the mess out of my spirit. I get upset because I know that I read enough, and pray enough to know that the devil is a liar and God is on the throne. Still, when it comes to the singleness, the childlessness, the loneliness, I oftentimes let the flesh get the upper hand.
So, what is the solution? The solution is to seek God’s face and rely on the Holy Spirit to give comfort as promised. The solution is to focus on the promises kept by God and the promises to be kept by God rather than focus on the plight of singleness. As the story suggests, the solution is to feed the spirit and to starve the flesh.
Thank You, God for the promise that You alone are God
Please forgive me for feeding my flesh more than my spirit.
Lord, please help me to focus on your faithfulness and
allow my spirit to win the battles and the war.
In Jesus’ Name,
*Scripture quotations are from the New International Version ©1984, unless otherwise indicated.