We are all in a struggle! Whether or not we like it, we are all in a struggle. We struggle physically, emotionally, and spiritually to survive in this world. We struggle physically against disease, weakness, and the comprehensive effects of aging. We struggle emotionally to “feel good.” We want to feel good so that we can accomplish all that needs to be done for the benefit of others and ourselves. We struggle to live spiritually in a fleshly body. The world around us caters to the physical, but our souls long for more attention, even peace!
So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature. For the sinful nature desires what is contrary to the Spirit, and the Spirit what is contrary to the sinful nature. They are in conflict with each other, so that you do not do what you want. (Galatians 5:16-17, NIV 1984)
Our body, soul, and spirit can long so intensely for peace in the midst of this struggle that we can begin to despise the struggle itself. We all tire of the struggle and at times may wish for the struggle to be over. The Bible describes our human struggle, as God’s people, according to God’s purpose for us. The Bible never offers us freedom from the struggle, during this life. However, it does offer us perspective that can guide us and strengthen our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:7). Moses says “The length of our days is seventy years — or eighty if we have the strength; yet their span is but trouble and sorrow for they quickly pass, and we fly away. . . . Teach us to number our days aright that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” (Psalms 90:10, 12)
Paul would encourage the saints in Ephesus to see Christ’s power, reign, and dominion over all things for the church as they face their struggle against the devil’s schemes and offers them this last encouragement about their struggles:
Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. 11 Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil’s schemes. 12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. 13 Therefore put on the full armor of God, so that when the day of evil comes, you may be able to stand your ground, and after you have done everything, to stand (Ephesians 6:10-13, NIV)
May God help us to see our struggle for what it really is, and seek His armor to stand strong in it! For Jesus can save us spirit, soul, and body (1 Thessalonians 5:23–24). He is faithful and He will do it!