Those who set out to live a Christian life soon learn that this is not accomplished without effort. The materialistic assumptions that constitute what the Bible calls "the carnal mind" Rom. 8:7. are always claiming control over the thoughts and actions of mankind—and especially of those who dedicate any portion of their lives to prayer, spiritual study, and the doing of good works.
But whether working out their own salvation in their personal lives, or as active church members, they are not startled by this apparent opposition, because they know that the carnal mind is not anyone's real mind. They know that God alone is Mind, the only intelligence or consciousness. And they strive to follow the apostle's counsel "Let this mind be in you, which was also in Christ Jesus," Phil. 2:5. knowing that the Mind of Christ is God Himself. Their dedication results in more peaceful and satisfying lives—lives exhibiting more meaning, more joy, love, and health.
And yet the upward paths of these same Christianized lives may sometimes seem to run into flat spots where inspiration flags, into valleys of doubt, roadblocks of illness, inharmonious relationships, economic reversals, or social upheavals. While such problems may indicate specific errors of thinking that need to be identified and corrected, often what is needed is a greater measure of consecration to spirituality.