Good stuff brother.
Something floating around in the cranium of late.
Think that first part really hit's on it:
[i]Spiritual healthiness is a key to enduring. Check yourself for signs of spiritual illness: lack of meaningful time in God's Word; using the word's methods to cope; decreasing interest in prayer; wavering obedience[/i]
(Is that supposed to be "worlds"? Actually if we use the "words" methods we would be much better off)
But for all that we can't accomplish in our 'flesh' there is still much we can do and I guess what I had been dwelling on was what Paul said:
[i]1Co 9:27 But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway. [/i]
A bit of commentary from Albert Barnes;
1Co 9:27 -
[b]But I keep under my body[/b] - (ὑπωπιάζω hupōpiazō). This word occurs in the New Testament only here and in Luk_18:5, Lest by her continual coming she weary me. The word is derived probably from ὑπώπιον hupōpion, the part of the face under the eye (Passow), and means properly, to strike under the eye, either with the fist or the cestus, so as to render the part livid, or as we say, black and blue; or as is commonly termed, to give anyone a black eye. The word is derived, of course, from the athletic exercises of the Greeks. It then comes to mean, to treat anyone with harshness, severity, or cruelty; and thence also, so to treat any evil inclinations or dispositions; or to subject ones-self to mortification or self-denial, or to a severe and rigid discipline, that all the corrupt passions might be removed. The word here means, that Paul made use of all possible means to subdue his corrupt and carnal inclinations; to show that he was not under the dominion of evil passions, but was wholly under the dominion of the gospel.
[b]And bring it into subjection[/b] - (δουλαγωγῶ doulagōgō). This word properly means, to reduce to servitude or slavery; and probably was usually applied to the act of subduing an enemy, and leading him captive from the field of battle; as the captives in war were regarded as slaves. It then means, effectually and totally to subdue, to conquer, to reduce to bondage and subjection. Paul means by it, the purpose to obtain a complete victory over his corrupt passions and propensities, and a design to gain the mastery over all his natural and evil inclinations.
[b]Lest that by any means[/b] - See the note at 1Co_9:22. Paul designed to make every possible effort to be saved. He did not mean to be lost, but he meant to be saved. He felt that there was danger of being deceived and lost; and he meant by some means to have evidence of piety that would abide the trial of the Day of Judgment.