How’s your prayer life?
I usually go there. In fact, I usually go there first. I’ve never charted this, but I suspect that if I took the problems people have told me about (and my own) and plugged them into some amazing graph, the amount of prayer would be inversely proportional to the rising struggles. And I don’t mean “thank you, God” prayers. I mean knee-callous prayers.
When Paul says that those who belong to Christ have crucified the flesh, he doesn’t mean an all-flash-no-boom, bottle-rocket prayer life. He tells the Galatians that the desires of the Holy Spirit don’t and can’t go hand-in-hand with our—let’s just say—less-holy desires. They’re like magnets of the same pole—they can never join together. If we live by the Spirit, we have to use the Spirit as our walking stick. Prayer keeps us standing up.
That’s exactly why I go straight for the jugular and ask about the prayer life. When it’s weak, so too is the fight, the drive. So, make sure you check your knees every once in a while.