“What a wretched man I am! Who will rescue me from this body of death? Thanks be to God—through Jesus Christ our Lord!”Romans 7:24-25a
My husband and I both like to read. But I find that often the book I really want to read is the one that is currently on his nightstand. One time I nabbed a book he was in the middle of and then accidentally left it on top of the car and drove away. He’s still sore about it!
Why do I do that sort of thing? Why am I hungrier for the book on his table rather than the many available on the bookshelves? I don’t know. I don’t understand myself, and I bet you don’t understand yourself either. Why do we so often want what we do not have? The Apostle Paul wrestled with the same conflict in the Christian life: the conflict of competing hungers. He wanted so much to do good, yet always evil was right there beckoning.
When you and I were born again by the Spirit through faith in Christ, we received a new appetite. Like a newborn, we cry for more of Jesus at regular intervals. But the flesh, our old nature, is still alive and craving junk food with its empty calories. Who will deliver us from these competing hungers? Christ Himself!
Our ongoing experience of competing hungers has one benefit. It reminds us that Jesus is our Savior. He is the nourishment we need!