Everyday there is a struggle within the heart of Christians. As a Christian strives to live for The Lord, this inner battle between flesh and spirit becomes felt more and more. It isn’t cute like the little cartoon characters on a person’s shoulders trying to sway decisions that are made. But it isn’t so different, either. It does influence many choices we make in our lives, but the consequences for some of those choices isn’t cute or humorous.
When children of God are first saved, they don’t become little gods, nor do they somehow begin to live sinless lives. They make mistakes, they say and do things they later regret, but through it all, the "new man" is still very much present. This new man/woman is the spirit of an individual, not to be confused with the soul, and only exists inside of true born-again Christians.
The spirit and flesh (the old man) don’t mix, as the Apostle Paul had written in Galatians 5:17, "For the flesh lusteth against the Spirit, and the Spirit against the flesh: and these are contrary the one to the other: so that ye cannot do the things that ye would."
As light and dark can’t co-exist, neither can good and evil. Those who belong to God can never be overtaken or possessed by evil, but they can be influenced by it and suffer from it. This is the fight of spirit and flesh, the struggle between the new and old man, and the conflict of faith and sin.
"For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places." (Ephesians 6:10-13)
As long as we are here in this life, there will always be this struggle inside. There will be times when the fight seems to go on and on, and then there will be times when it seems to lessen. But the cure for weak moments in living a more dedicated Christian life is The Lord Jesus Christ.
Before the Apostle Peter had denied The Lord, Christ told him (in Luke 22:31) that Satan desired to have him, that he might sift him as wheat. He added, in verse 32, "But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not…"
When you are struggling in this way, it means a lot to have someone pray for you. Considering it’s The Lord who has prayed for you, such as in John 17, means that much more. This is the cure for Christians. Not so much that the fight would go away – although we are blessed with times of reprieve when we resist the devil (James 4:7) – but knowing The Lord is there and that His prayers have touched even us.
In Ephesians 4:21-24, it says, "If so be that ye have heard him, and have been taught by him, as the truth is in Jesus: That ye put off concerning the former conversation the old man, which is corrupt according to the deceitful lusts; And be renewed in the spirit of your mind; And that ye put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness."
So as the battles inside rage on, be renewed in the spirit of your mind. And know that you are never alone.