The first man I see… never stops lusting after the things of this world, trying to gratify himself with things that won’t satisfy. He seeks to fill a spiritual void with material things, but the material stuff never fills the spiritual emptiness, and he is left feeling empty. He has made a God out of money, worshipping it and seeking its rewards. He has a fuse as tiny as a mustard seed, quick to anger and slow to love. He lacks self-control. He is a slave to himself. He is filled with selfish envy, longing for what others have and wanting it for himself. He is never thankful for what he has because what he has is never enough, leading to the never-ending feeling of joyless discontent. He is driven by insecurity that he’s never enough, so he lies to make himself sound better. He seeks revenge for the people who wronged him, as though he had never wronged anyone, a hypocrite. He is a nervous wreck of anxiety worrying over minor things. He finds no rest. This first man I see is truly dead. He can’t sleep til he sins. He is desperately driven to gain the whole world but drastically loses his soul.
But I also see another man.
The second man I see… thirsts after the living God. His satisfaction is found in him. There is no void, for in his God is wholeness, peace and fullness of joy. He has no idols or gods. He worships God and God alone, seeking his rewards. He is patient with people when they anger him, slow to anger and abounding in love. He isn’t a slave to himself. He is a servant of God. He doesn’t need to envy. In God, he has enough. He is thankful for all God has given him, from salvation to the food on his plate. He knows where it comes from. He finds contentment and joy in God. He doesn’t need to make himself sound great, he knows he’s not enough, but he’s ok with that because, for him, God is enough. He prays for his enemies and loves those who have sinned against him. He doesn’t need to worry. He trusts his father and finds rest and refuge in him. The second man I see is truly alive. He can’t sleep till he prays. He doesn’t need this world. It’s not his home. He’s gaining heaven.
These two men I see are both me. My flesh and my spirit.
It is a mystery to me how such good yet such evil can coexist within me. I will never understand it, but I must do what I can to live in the spirit.
Galatians 5:17 – For the desires of the flesh are against the Spirit, and the desires of the Spirit are against the flesh, for these are opposed to each other, to keep you from doing the things you want to do.
Who are the two men/women you see?
Write them down, learn your areas of weakness and your areas of strength, try to understand your spirit and flesh and place boundaries in place and habits to live fully in the spirit. Starve the flesh until it craves, and when it craves, starve it more. Let it die. – Adam