Flesh vs. Holy Spirit

“The flesh distrusts God, trusts in present things, seeks human aid in trouble, even contrary to God’s will. It flees from suffering, which it ought to bear because of God’s commands. It doubts God’s mercy and so on. The Holy Spirit in our hearts fights against such tendencies in order to suppress and kill them and to produce new spiritual motives.” — Apology of the Augsburg Confession V 45-49

It’s tempting to seize control of your barrenness and change your status. You dearly want to trust that your doctor has the tools to prepare your body to carry a child. You want to believe the advice of friends who’ve had success in child-bearing. You hear about couples who have children through IVF. In your head and heart, you know it opposes God’s will. Yet it is still so hard to accept this truth and live in God’s grace. You go home to a quiet house at the end of the day. You weep when the phone call comes, announcing a friend’s pregnancy. You wonder if toys will ever occupy space on your living room floor. Your suffering never seems to end. You feel alone.

Take heart, dear sisters. You are not alone. The Holy Spirit is fighting against the sinful flesh for you. Yes, for you! The Holy Spirit wards off more evil thoughts than you know and gives you strength to live each day. It is the Holy Spirit who reminds you that you are remembered by Jesus. So fight on, Holy Spirit; fight on! th-1

Ephesians 6:10-17 (ESV)

“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places. Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm. Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one; and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.”