Feed the Spirit
John 6:63: The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing, the words I have spoken to you--they are full of the Spirit and life.
Romans 8:26: In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans and that words cannot express.
Running and cycling is tremendously demanding on the body. I had worked a full day and had responsibilities that needed attention. There were bills to pay, kids who need love, a wonderful wife who I want to give attention and care to. No, this is not a Cat Stevens song, even though it sounds a lot like one. We have friends and family going through hardships and lots of demands in any given day. I don't know too many people who have a wide open schedule each and every day. Most of us have a list of things to accomplish in a twenty four hour period. Who can add exercise to the mix?
I am training for a triathlon and I started my training at 7 P.M. on my bike planted in front of my TV watching my favorite hockey team. I was right next to the treadmill which looked as if it were warning me to stay away.
I finished my 45 minute ride and transitioned into my running shoes and got on the treadmill. My feet felt like lead weights and I struggled to find any sense of joy whatsoever in this endeavor. As I pushed through, I heard the still small voice of the Lord tell me, " Feed the Spirit and the body will follow." I didn't quite know what that meant but I focused my thoughts and my pain on Jesus. I was prompted to open my mouth and pray in the Spirit. As I started to pray in the Spirit, I didn't know what I was praying at all, but my body started to yield to what I was trying to accomplish. It fell in line with my focus on Jesus. By the time the first mile was done, I was ready for more, and I didn't feel the pain or desire to fall into a heap on the floor next to the treadmill. All of the concerns that I had about the day and the responsibilities went to the feet of Jesus and off of me.
You see the Spirit gives life. The Spirit renews, and cleanses us of the fleshly distractions.
You may not be a triathlete or even an athlete in any way, but the idea is the same in any situation. We all have that pit in our stomach before we are about to do something that feels like a fight scene in the movie Braveheart. Running across a field to engage in a collision with something that looks like pure pain.
You see the flesh has to yield to the Spirit, and as we have a gateway to the Spirit through Jesus, we can access that at any time to overcome any obstacle that looks like it is stronger than us. I encourage you to ask the Lord for the gift of praying in the Spirit if you don't have that right now. Even if you have no idea what that is, it is okay. Just focus all your energy from every area of your body onto Jesus and see Him in your heart and mind. He will accomplish what it is that you are in the middle of at this moment. When we focus on Jesus and not ourselves, we feed the Spirit. Take time to read the word of God every day and fill yourself with the Spirit filled words of God. Spend time reading and listening to anointed messages of the grace of Jesus. Make your flesh yield to whatever situation you're in, but whatever you do, feed the Spirit.
A lot of people including myself can often mistake feeding the body instead of feeding the Spirit. We all need food to live, but man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God (Matt. 4:4). Jesus is the living word of God made flesh (John 1-4) full of grace and truth. We can often find ourselves mindlessly eating, and when stress comes, so does a plate of cookies. The fact is that the joy of feeding the Spirit brings victory to us through all of the tough situations in life, and also brings about joy in the middle of hardships. Look to feed the Spirit which is life, and in doing so, the flesh will follow. Jesus gave us all that we need in this life and eternally through His sacrifice. That is not there just to know, but to be a part of. Feast on Him, and feed your Spirit and anything and I mean anything will be accomplished through Him. We are more than conquerors in Jesus.