The Real Phil

Daily Reform, Day 170

Galatians 2:20 & Romans 7:14-20

From the Reformer

Paul does not deny the fact that he is living in the flesh. He performs the natural functions of the flesh. But he says that this is not his real life. His life in the flesh is not a life after the flesh.

—Martin Luther, Commentary on the Epistle to the Galatians

Pulling It Together

I used to care for a number of people who were confined to wheelchairs. Phil, my Best Man, was a quadriplegic, only able to move his head and neck and a bit of his shoulders and upper arm muscles. There were things he did not want to do that he did involuntarily. Furthermore, he wanted to do things that he simply could not do. Someone else would have to do those things for him. But this man, confined to a chair and dependent upon others, was not the real Phil. The real Phil was the guy who taught me to play guitar when he could not move his own fingers. The real Phil was the guy who danced in the rain with me when he could not move his feet. The real Phil did not depend upon the flesh because he knew better than me that his life, though for the moment confined to this flesh, was lived by faith in the Son of God.

© Mark E. Ryman, Daily Reform: Devotions with the Reformers

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