“The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” You’ve heard that phrase, right? Many don’t even know it’s Biblical in origin (you can look it up). Well, I have a confession to make – often I think it’s my mind and spirit that’s really weak and the source of the problem, which means my body has no chance! Let me illustrate…it’s common for me to have a week filled with many church and school activities – board meetings, parent meetings, school athletic events, church meetings at night, weekend activities, etc. The schedule looks daunting, and my mind/spirit is the problem – “you don’t really need to go to all of those things”… “you won’t be missed if you’re not there”… “don’t you deserve some time to rest and relax?” My body is not the problem – I’m rested and ready to go. However, my sinful nature tries to lead me astray from my service in God’s kingdom.
I’ve been thinking about this challenge in the context of our theme for this school year “Christ-fit for Service” based on 1 Peter 4:10-11. Our theme focus for February is Christ-fit to serve with a willing mind based on 1 Chronicles 28:9a: “And you, Solomon my son, know the God of your father and serve him with a whole heart and with a willing mind.” So how do we develop and nurture a “willing mind/spirit?” I believe that a willing mind is a product of a strong spiritual walk with Jesus – regular Bible study, worship, prayer, and meditation as we embrace the truth of everything our Savior has done for us – death, resurrection, free grace and forgiveness. I know I need to dedicate myself to service to my Savior, and He will grant me the “willing mind” that comes from living free as a joyously redeemed child of God. As a result, when I hit one of “those weeks” I can attend and participate in all those events with a willing mind, an ebullient heart, and the smile of the forgiven. And guess what? I always have a great time and am filled with joy and the spirit of God. Maybe the quote should be, “The spirit and the flesh are weak, but our God is always willing!”