Physical strength. Emotional strength. Mental strength.
Body, spirit, mind, soul.
” For the word of God is quick, and powerful, and sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing even to the dividing asunder of soul and spirit, and of the joints and marrow, and is a discerner of the thoughts and intents of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12)
Before I knew Christ, my soul was the master of my human spirit. It was a master-slave relationship.
The only thing that my soul cares about is satisfaction, contentment.
My mind would order my human spirit to do whatever is doable to keep my soul satisfied. When things don’t work out as expected, my soul becomes more dissatisfied because my mind had become confused due to my body having become tired before it could even try do the things it was ordered to do.
When Christ rebirth my human spirit, he also satisfied my soul by residing in him. From then on, His Spirit renews my mind with new teaching every day.
Now whenever my soul feels tired, my mind tries to guide my human spirit into doing the former things hoping to get a quick and yet temporary satisfaction. But my body simply doesn’t comply as much as before because the fear component has been removed from the body.
In the end, I don’t feel as “high” as I used to feel by trying to do any of my old deeds.
Many things that I used to do were to seek satisfaction for my soul. Now that Christ is in my soul, my soul sometimes tries to see if there’s anything more satisfiable than Christ. And you know how it usually ends, because after all the pain and pressure my soul subjects my mind and spirit and body through, there’s never a greater satisfaction than “Christ in me”.
Everyday my soul wakes up seeking a greater satisfaction to only come to disappointment. Why is that? Because that’s what my soul used to do before Christ, day after day. First, he wanted to grow up as an adult, then he wanted a girlfriend, then he wanted to get married, then he wanted children, then he wanted …and then wanted…and then wanted…How long will it be before my soul is convinced that there is no greater satisfaction than Christ himself?
There’s another aspect of that problem. Even when my soul is satisfied, others wish to see me act the same ways that I used to. And when I try to do so, I fail because my new human spirit is not motivated by fear like the old human spirit but by joy, the joy of Christ in me. Even as I try to satisfy others, and fail, I learn the reason for my failure is simply because only Jesus can satisfy the soul of others. Yet, that won’t stop them from hoping that I satisfy them. For as long as my mind retains the fact that only Jesus can satisfy others as He has satisfied me, I will be resting, something that I wasn’t so used to before Christ arrived.
“For who knows a person’s thoughts except their own spirit within them? ” (1 Corinthians 2:11)
My human spirit is always checking my mind to see what’s next on the agenda. There’s only one thing on the agenda, “rest”.
I used to draw praises from others by doing the things they hope would satisfy them. Those praises are gone. And my mind tends to wonder if “no praises from others is a good thing” since that’s how it used to measure my self-worth. But when my soul becomes dissatisfied for no praises, he is reminded of what Christ said, “Be careful not to practice your righteousness in front of others to be seen by them. ” (Matthew 6:1). Then I become satisfied again with Christ alone. I become satisfied with resting.
It’s not easy to transition from work to retirement. It’s not easy for my soul to transition from work to rest. Yet, every moment that my soul seeks satisfaction from works through my mind, my human spirit and my body, he never gets it because satisfaction of my soul resides with Christ.
“Bless the Lord, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:
Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases; Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies; Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.” (Psalm 103:1-5)
My soul, in seeking satisfaction, has committed and caused many iniquities. My soul was sick with many diseases, by which he constantly sought satisfaction regardless of how hurtful they were to others and himself in return. The things that my soul had pushed my mind to learn where things that lead to destruction. Destruction of my mind, destruction of my spirit, destruction of my body, destruction of the very members of my soul. Hence, destruction of my life.
But when my mind has been filled with the faith that is from God, the hearing of the good news, and my bruised spirit has been healed with rebirth, and my body has received the hope of resurrection, the inhabiting of the Holy Spirit, then my youth has surely been renewed like the eagle’s youth.
“And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies because of his Spirit who lives in you.” (Romans 8:11)
Bless the name of Jesus, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless his name and all who are his, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits. Amen.
What a reality!
“For my Father’s will is that everyone who looks to the Son and believes in him shall have eternal life, and I will raise them up at the last day.” (John 6:40)