The last few times I’ve taken an antibiotic, it has done an excellent job of killing not only the bad guys in my body but also the good guys, leaving me with very serious cases of an intestinal virus that only one antibiotic kills and that not very easily. So my doctor and I have been trying to avoid putting me on any antibiotics for the last few years. Well, a CAT scan of my sinuses revealed that the sinus infection I’ve been fighting for months is winning and we decided that it’s time to risk the antibiotic again.

But this time I’m being proactive. Each time I take one of the antibiotics I also eat some probiotic cheese or yogurt. So three times a day as I take my prescribed pill, I am praying for the antibiotic to kill the bad guys. Shortly thereafter, I am praying as I eat my yogurt or cheese for the good cultures to grow strong within me. We’re almost two weeks into the regimen and so far the good guys are winning.

I know, I know — TMI. But the whole process has been a “live” illustration of Romans 7. There is a battle within me to follow God’s ways or my own ways. God’s ways are the “good” culture within me. My own ways, my sinful ways, are the nasty viruses that lead to sickness, hospitalization, and if not arrested, even death. The battle wages constantly, every second of every day, sometimes behind the scene, sometimes in a more “in-your-face” way. But always there’s a battle going on.

Paul put it this way:

“It seems to be a fact of life that when I want to do what is right, I inevitably do what is wrong. I love God’s law with all my heart. But there is another law at work within me that is at war with my mind. This law wins the fight and makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me.” (Romans 7:21-23)

When the bad virus within my body takes control, I become a slave to it. My movements and activities are limited until the bad guys are brought under control again. It is the good guys within my body that bring the bad guys under control. When the bad guys grow in strength and number, I am down for the count. When the good guys grow in strength and number, health and life returns to my body.

Often, God uses the natural to give us insight into the spiritual. When I fill my spirit, mind and emotions with viruses, things that are not of God, I will reap the consequences of that unhealthy diet. The good that is within me is outnumbered and outgunned by the bad that I am feeding. When I fill my spirit, mind and emotions with the things of God, I build up the good within me.

With natural eyes, I can’t see the good and bad spiritual cells within my body. But then with natural eyes, I can’t see the good and bad physical cells that are within my body. But in both cases, they are there. Both the good and bad physical and spiritual cells are alive, ready to grow at the slightest feeding. Which will you choose? Lord, help me to choose life!

In Deuteronomy 28-30, Moses reminds the Israelites of the blessings God promises those who keep their covenant with Him and the curses that will follow those who step out from under the protection of God’s covenant.  In chapter 30, he concludes his discussion:

“Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, that you and your descendants might live! Choose to love the LORD your God and to obey him and commit yourself to him, for he is your life.” (Deuteronomy 30:19-20a)

Lord, help me to choose life!

One Response to “The Battle Within Me”
  1. That battle rages on incessantly doesn’t it? In my science background I always consider the basic law in physics. For every action there is a reaction. How we treat the enemy is no different whether it is a microorganism or the neighbor who cut down our tree.

    I hope your sinus infection heals without ill side effects As a side note, I have sinus problems too, I keep thinking I will try a neti pot but haven’t bought one yet. I hear they change lives as far as sinus are concerned.

    Thanks for the comment on blogher!

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